Minimum wage rises offset reduced hours, report finds
The average take home pay of workers on the minimum wage increased over the years from 2016-2018, according to new research from the Economic and Social Research Institute.
The report also finds that the hours worked by some on the minimum wage, fell by almost one hour per week.
But the increase in the minimum wage offset any loss of earnings from fewer hours worked.
The report found the reduction in hours worked varied across employment sectors.
In industry, which is mostly made up of jobs in manufacturing, hours worked fell by three hours per week.
In accommodation and food, the fall was two-and-a-half hours per week.
In both these cases, the increase in earnings was enough to offset the falloff in hours worked.
The report notes that more research is needed to understand exactly why there was a falloff in the number of hours worked in the industry sector, where minimum wage workers tend to be older and full time compared to other sectors where minimum wage earners are younger and the minimum wage is a ‘stepping stone’ to higher pay.
The minimum wage has been increased by government every year since 2016 following recommendations from the Low Pay Commission.
The study was funded by the Commission.
The minimum wage was increased in the last Budget by 30c and currently stands at €10.50 an hour.