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Research indicate racial pay gap narrows

New statistics from The Office for National Statistics suggests the gap in average hourly wages earned by white people and non-white groups fell to 2.3% in the UK in 2019.

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New statistics from The Office for National Statistics suggests the gap in average hourly wages earned by white people and non-white groups fell to 2.3% in the UK in 2019.

The pay gap was down from 3.8% in 2018 and a high of 8.4% in 2014. The gap between has narrowed to its smallest level since 2012 in England and Wales.

The average hourly wage for a worker from an ethnic minority background stood at £12.11 last year, compared with £12.40 for a white worker.

The data hides big disparities between different ethnic groups. People from Pakistani, African, and Bangladeshi backgrounds earned the lowest average wages of the 17 ethnic groups looked at by the ONS. Pakistanis and Bangladeshi workers earn about 15% less than white British employees.

While the national ethnic pay gap is narrowing, it remains stark in the capital. Non-white workers earn almost a quarter less than white people in London. The ethnic pay gap was 23.8% in London. The smallest gap was in Wales, where it stood at just 1.4%.

The ethnic pay gaps is also more pronounced for men than women. White men earned 6.1% more than ethnic minority men on average, while white women earned 2.1% more than ethnic minority women.

The size of the ethnicity pay gap for those aged 30 years and over is larger than for those aged 16 to 29 years.
The data analysed came from the Annual Population Survey 2012 to 2019 and each year covers January to December. All data were collected before the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on the UK economy.