Finance workers win record pay increases

RecordOnce again Statistics NZ’s Labour Cost Index has demonstrated the benefits of belonging to Finsec, with finance and insurance workers gaining the largest increase in salary and wage rates in New Zealand for the third quarter in a row.

In the year to the June 2007 quarter, salary and wage rates (including overtime) for the finance and insurance industry increased 5.2%. This is up on a 5.0% increase in the year to the March 2007 quarter. According to Statistics NZ this is the largest annual increase since the series began in the June 2001 quarter. Overall the average hourly earnings for a finance or insurance worker rose over the last year $1.68 to $31.71. Of course, in reality, very few finance workers actually earn this much – a few senior executives might be skewing the average a bit with million dollar remuneration packages. But it’s nice that the average is going up, eh?

However, the statistics are not all good. the Quarterly Employment Survey for June 2007 shows that the number of filled jobs in the finance and insurance industry has fallen from 54,600 in June 2006 to 52,400 in June 2007. So, that’s 2,200 less people working in finance and insurance, which probably means more workload and more concerns about understaffing.

And as always, not everyone is happy. ANZ National’s chief economist, Cameron Bagrie, took time to tell the Herald that we needn’t worry too much because, even though the labour market tight:

“It was mildly encouraging that wage inflation had not accelerated in the June quarter, particularly as an increase in the minimum wage came into force on April 1. But wage inflation was likely to remain at those levels for some time.”

(thanks to e.dward for the photo)

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