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MNI (London)
By Jamie Satchithanantham and Laurie Laird
     **LONDON (MNI) - The following are the key points from the ONS' labour
market data release published Tuesday by the Office for National Statistics.
     - Bank of England forecasts of accelerating wage growth were at last borne
out in the 3 months to February. Real wages, including bonuses, rose by 0.1%
over the same period a year ago. Excluding bonuses real wages grew by 0.2%, the
fastest pace since the 3m to January 2017.
     - Nominal wage growth disappointed, rising by 2.8% including bonuses,
falling well short of the median MNI forecast of 3.0%. - Bonus payments fell by
3.3% in the year to February, pulling 3m annual bonus growth down to annual rate
of 3.5% -- the lowest since the 3 months to July. Excluding bonuses, nominal
wage growth to an as-expected 2.8% from 2.6% previously.
     - The ONS discounts nominal wage growth using its preferred measure of
inflation, CPIH, and not CPI. According to an ONS statistician, using the latter
both measures of real wage growth would still be in negative territory.
     - The jobless rate ticked down to 4.2%, slightly below the Bank's estimated
equilibrium rate. On a single month basis, the jobless rate fell to 4.0%, the
lowest since records began in 1992.
--MNI London Bureau; tel: +44 203-586-2225; email: les.commons@marketnews.com
[TOPICS: MABDS$,MAUDR$,MAUDS$,M$B$$$,M$E$$$,M$U$$$]
MNI London Bureau | +44 203-865-3812 | les.commons@marketnews.com

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