24th November 2017.

Earning Forecast “Astonishing”

The prediction that average UK earnings in 2022 could still be less than in 2008 is “astonishing”, according to an independent economic think tank.

A growth forecast released by the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) was described by Paul Johnson, director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies, as  “pretty grim reading”.

Johnson highlighted that since 2014 growth in earnings has been “choked off”.

“We are in danger of losing not just one but getting on for two decades of earnings growth,” he said.

Another growth forecast, published by the Resolution Foundation found that disposable incomes are now expected to be £540 lower by 2023 than forecast in March, largely as a result of weaker pay growth.

Despite employment remaining high in the UK, wage growth has not acted as expected and has remained stubbornly low.

The Foundations’s data found that while wages in the UK have risen by 2.2 per cent since September, this does not count for inflation which is currently uncommonly high.

These low growth forecasts are jeopardising the government’s plan to balance the books by the mid 2020s.

Johnson from IFS sees it as highly unlikely that Mr Hammond will meet that target.

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