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Minimum Wage

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Calls for a review of the minimum wage should be placed in context.

According to the 2007 National Employment Survey 14 percent of all employees in the State had hourly earnings below €10 while a similar percentage had earnings above €40 per hour.

When account is taken of hours worked, employees earning less than €250 a week account for only 4 percent of the national wage bill as compared with a 13.5 percent share for those earning over €1,500 a week. A ten percent reduction in wages for all 233,000 employees earning less than €250 a week would reduce the national payroll by 0.4 percent whereas a similar reduction for the 233,000 highest paid employees would reduce the national payroll by eight times as much.

For maximum impact, any campaign to improve national wage competitiveness should start with high-paid employees, directors and self-employed rather than the lowest paid. To show leadership, our politicians should take substantial reductions in salaries which, even after minor tweaking, are still amongst the highest in the world.

Letter published in the Sunday Business Post on 16th August 2009. 

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This page contains a single entry by Brian published on August 7, 2009 12:48 PM.

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