Wage growth slows as latest unemployment figures released

Wage growth has slowed but still remains well above the rate of inflation while unemployment is unchanged, according to official figures.

Average weekly wage growth, which excludes bonuses, eased to 6.6% in the three months to November, from 7.3% a month earlier, the Office for National Statistics said.

It means pay packets grew faster than the rate of price rises, which stood at a more than two-year low of 3.9% up to November.

November also had the lowest number of strikes days for 18 months due to a slowdown in health sector industrial action as some NHS walkouts paused and consultants agreed a new pay deal.

The rate of unemployment also remained at 4.2%, still historically low. A slight uptick, to 4.3%, had been expected by economists polled by Reuters.

Slowed wage growth will be of note to the interest rate setters at the Bank of England.

The regulator had been increasing interest rates to reduce inflation with governor Andrew Bailey having described wage rises over the summer as “unsustainable”.

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