More than 200,000 jobs paid less than minimum wage this spring

The number of jobs paid below the national minimum wage in the UK was 272,000 in spring 2004, amounting to 1.1 per cent of all jobs in the labour market.

There are two rates for the national minimum wage: one for those aged between 18 and 21 (£3.80 per hour) and one for those aged 22 and over (£4.50 per hour). However, 45,000 jobs (2.4 per cent) held by those aged 18 to 21 were paid below £3.80 per hour this spring.

Among those aged 22 and over, 227,000 jobs (1.0 per cent) were paid below £4.50 per hour during the same period.

Part-timers were more than three times as likely as people in full-time work to be paid less than the minimum wage, with 2.3 per cent of part-time jobs and 0.7 per cent of full-time jobs falling below the minimum wage.

Jobs held by women were almost twice as likely to fall below the minimum wage as jobs held by men (1.4 per cent compared with 0.8 per cent). This was entirely due to the greater number of women in part-time jobs.

These estimates have been produced using a new methodology based solely on the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings, which replaces the New Earnings Survey.

The Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings includes extra survey samples in 2004 to improve coverage of the low end of pay distribution. The Labour Force Survey is no longer used to contribute to the estimates.


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