LO on 2007 wage statistics

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The wages of workers increased more than those of professional employees for the first time in ten years.
In 2007, the wages increased, on average, 3.8 per cent for workers and 3.6 per cent for professional employees. This is the first time in ten years that workers’ wages increased more than those of professional employees.

This is stated by LO in the Wage report for 2008 – Wages and wage development 1997 – 2007.

The wage gap between workers and professional employees is, however, still wide as the average wage for the former is now SEK 20 500 per month (approx. Euro 2 140) and for the latter SEK 29 200 (approx. Euro 3 060), i.e. SEK 8 800 (approx. 920 Euro) or 43 per cent higher for a professional employee.

- It is promising that the wages have increased that much for our members. It shows on the effect of the close coordination of the LO affiliates in the latest round of negotiations. Now it is a question of continuing this trend also in the next round of negotiations in order to acquire a long-term stable and just wage formation in which the wage gaps between workers and professional employees subside to an acceptable level, Per Bardh, the LO Negotiating Secretary, says.

However, the wage adjustment between women and men suffered a setback in 2007, when the wages increased more for men than for women. The increases were 3.7 per cent for men and 3.5 per cent for women. The difference among workers was, compared to that among professional employees, nevertheless less, 3.9 per cent for men and 3.8 per cent for women. All in all, the wages have increased more for women than for men during the last ten years. The adjustment is, however, very slow and irregular.

The outcome of 2007 could be interpreted as the so-called earmarked money pot for equal wages, which were included in many wage agreements for the years 2007-2008, did not have the intended effect. But it is still too early to say anything definitive about that.

– The fact that the adjustment of wages between women and men makes such a slow progress constitutes a great problem, although the wage gaps are less among workers than among professional employees. Neither have we seen the full effect of the wage increases earmarked for more equal wages which the LO affiliates negotiated in the wage agreements in force until the year 2009. If the outcome of these is favourable, we might be able to negotiate something similar also for the next term of agreement, Per Bardh, LO Negotiating Secretary, concludes.