HC Deb 16 December 1982 vol 34 c217W
Mr. Freud

asked the Secretary of State for Employment whether he will list in the Official Report the average percentage rise in wages paid to (a) the lowest paid tenth of the adult male full-time work force and (b) the highest paid tenth of that work force in 1979, 1980, 1981 and so much of 1982 for which figures are available.

Mr. Alison

The percentage change in average earnings between successive Aprils of full-time males aged 21 and over whose pay was not affected by absence, as recorded in the new earnings survey, was as follows:

The 10 per cent, of employees with the lowest earnings The 10 per cent, of employees with the highest earnings
1979–80 +20.8 +29.9
1980–81 +11.2 +13.8
1981–82 +6.8 +10.4

Changes in average earnings will reflect changes in the composition of employment—the relative numbers in different industries, occupations, etc.—and do not necessarily reflect equivalent changes in the rates of pay for comparable jobs.