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Economy Majority of workers expect to become even poorer in 2018

A report by the Centre for Labour and Social Studies points to privatisation for causing a race to the bottom in British workplaces

FOUR in five workers expect to become poorer this year, a new study reveals today.

A report from the Centre for Labour and Social Studies (Class) also points the finger at privatisation for unleashing a race to the bottom in Britain’s workplaces.

It says the recent collapse of outsourcing giant Carillion “is emblematic of a business model that prioritises shareholder dividends over workers’ pensions.”

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said the research showed that Britain’s economy had been “rigged by the Tories in the interests of the very few at the top.”

A survey of 2,000 workers found that 57 per cent of them believe they will get no pay rise at all over the next year.

Of those who do, most anticipate a measly rise of 1 or 2 per cent, which is likely to remain below inflation throughout 2018.

Once this is taken into account, almost 80 per cent expect to become poorer.

The figures also showed that around three-quarters of Britain’s workers do not believe the economy is working for them.

Twenty per cent of working households have seen an earner take on a second job to make ends meet and a further 20 per cent are seriously considering it.

Class director Faiza Shaheen said: “Workers in Britain are rapidly losing hope and believe there is no light at the end of the tunnel on pay.

“They are overworked, underpaid, stressed and beset with job insecurity and wage stagnation. With interest rates set to rise, workers are caught in a perfect storm.”

The study found “alarming” levels of worker stress across many sectors due to high debts, long hours and low pay.

Mr McDonnell added: “This new research exposes the reality of life in Britain for ordinary people under this government.

“Almost eight years of Tory economic failure has produced falling real wages and millions of workers forced to take on second jobs just to make ends meet.”

He pledged that Labour would “shift the balance of power in our economy back towards working people,” citing the party’s plans for a £10 an hour minimum wage and beefed-up workplace rights.


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