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Kiwis struggling as wage growth plunges to lowest in 13 years

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Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement:

Headline: Kiwis struggling as wage growth plunges to lowest in 13 years

Grant Robertson  | 
Wednesday, August 7, 2013 – 17:04

Kiwis are suffering the lowest average annual wage growth in 13 years, in a sign of the two-speed economy National has created, Labour’s Employment Spokesperson Grant Robertson says.

Wages grew at an average of just 3.4 per cent in the past year, the lowest average increase since 2000, according to Statistics New Zealand’s Labour Cost Index released today.

“It will not surprise many people to hear this when they are working more than one job and struggling to pay the bills,” Grant Robertson says.

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“The lack of wage growth will see the gap between rich and poor grow. A whopping 44 per cent of Kiwis didn’t get a pay rise in the past year, while the worth of New Zealand’s wealthiest rose by 8 per cent, according to the NBR Rich List.

“At the same time, the Government has paid out millions in bonuses to Solid Energy executives and substantially increased the fees for Mighty River Power directors.”

“Kiwis are still flocking to Australia where wages are around 20 per cent higher,” Grant Robertson says.

“If we are to give New Zealanders a reason to stay here, we need to see wages rise.

“Labour will raise the minimum wage, campaign for a Living Wage, and invest in training to lift skills and productivity. Rising wages will be part of an economy that benefits all New Zealanders,” Grant Robertson says.

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