You asked

In the past year there has been the introduction of the new pension scheme for all employees. This attracts a matching contribution from employers, meaning that those who enter the scheme are receiving a pay rise compared with those who remain outside.

Do the statistics for increases in pay rates over the year take any account of the above? i.e. is there any attempt to reflect the actual increase in pay because employers are now matching savings in the new pension schemes, or is that de facto pay increase ignored in the statistics for pay rises?

If you do not attempt to include the value of this increase, do you have an estimate of how much it has raised pay?

Similarly has any attempt been made to reflect the loss of 'wages' caused by the closure of pension schemes over the past 20 years?

We said

Thank you for your request. We publish two lead earnings statistics sources:

  1. Average Weekly Earnings, published monthly as part of UK Labour market statistics (see tables 13-16).

  2. The Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) publication. Both focus on money being paid directly (before deductions) in 'pay packets'. Neither includes pensions contributions as a measure of earnings, because contributions are considered a benefit in kind rather than being earnings paid directly.

Although pensions contributions are not included in our earnings statistics, we do recognise - through other publications - their role in total remuneration. Our Summary of Pension Results: ASHE publication provides details of types of pension scheme paid into, and employer contributions by band. The associated data tables can be reviewed to gain an indication of how contributions have developed over time.

Similarly, DWP publish trends in workplace pension participation.

An article Total reward: pay and pension contributions in the private and public sectors, published in Economic & Labour Market Review | Vol 4 | No 9 | September 2010, did consider pay plus pension contributions between the two sectors. However, it did not provide time series analysis and the analysis has not been repeated.