Real wages and "real-for-me" wages

This is our entry to the Bank of England's data visualisation competition. We decided to use the data on people's own subjective estimates of inflation, to look at how this might impactthe discussion and understanding of living standards. The visualisations below use that BoE data alongside data from the ONS on wages and actual inflation rates. The question is - do people feel inflation differently, and does this vary by age group? Should we think about "real-for-me" wages, as well as "real wages"?

It's in two parts - the first graph compares CPI inflation with wages and then does the smae comparison for "perceived inflation" - what people actually thought, or estimated, had happened to prices over the last 12 months. By clicking Next and Back you can navigate the different presentations, and hovering over the space will tell you the values at particular points in time. 

To view this graph on a mobile click here

The next graph breaks down the perceived inflation figures and the earnings figures by age group. Here, earnings come from the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings, from the ONS. These figures are annual rather than quarterly, but we compare them to the quarterly inflation estimates. Some adjustments have been made to the age bands, as ASHE uses a different structure to the bands use by BoE. As the over 65s don't really have wages, we have used median pensioner incomes instead, from DWP's Households Below Average Incomes dataset. 

The BoE data only covers the period from 2009, when real wages were already falling according to the graph above. The graph below shows which age groups saw the biggest falls in "real-for-me" wages. 

To view this graph on a mobile click here

There is more you can do with the inflation survey - it incldues a question on people's expectations of inflation, as well as experiences. That might be interesting to look at, in terms of varying optimism among differnt groups. There are also breakdowns by gender and social class, both of which may yield worthwhile findings.