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Earnings Analysis using Administrative Data Sources 2020

This release has been compiled during the COVID-19 crisis. The results contained in this release reflect some of the economic impacts of the COVID-19 situation.

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The Earnings Analysis using Administrative Data Sources (EAADS) publication presents earnings statistics compiled based on administrative data sources. The primary data source is the Revenue Commissioner’s employee tax data. This is linked to the Central Statistics Office (CSO) Business Register and other data to provide economic and demographic breakdowns of employee earnings in Ireland. 

Matched datasets on which this publication is based are created for each year in the period 2011 to 2020. These reference datasets allow for a detailed analysis of earnings based on the economic and demographic characteristics available, including economic sector, gender, age, nationality and region. Also presented in the publication is analysis of the distribution of earnings.

Mean and median weekly and annual earnings are detailed in the publication and in the related PxStat tables.

Statistics in relation to employee hourly earnings and hours worked are available from the Earnings and Labour Costs releases on the Central Statistics Office website.

Please refer to the background notes of this publication for further information on the data sources utilised and how they were matched.

Impact of COVID-19 on Earnings Statistics

The COVID-19 pandemic and the restrictions applied in response to it had a significant impact on the Labour Market in 2020. Earnings statistics for 2020 and comparisons with earlier years are impacted by changes in the composition of the labour market across 2020 and when compared to 2019 and earlier years. The level of earnings has also been impacted by the COVID-19 income support schemes introduced in 2020.

These factors should be taken into account when considering the results presented in this publication. To highlight the impact of these factors, additional analysis has been included in the Main Results chapter.

Since Quarter 2 (Q2) 2020 the CSO has been publishing a series of Labour Market Insight Bulletins which were designed to provide high-level supplementary labour market analysis to users alongside the standard labour market outputs and metrics.

Change to employee tax data

For years 2011-2018 the employee tax data used for the EAADS came from employer end of year returns, P35, submitted to Revenue. The P35 was an annual return that was completed by all registered employers after the tax year end, up to 2018.  

Since 1 January 2019 Revenue have operated real-time reporting of payroll (“PAYE Modernisation (PMOD)”). Employers are required to report their employees’ pay and deductions in real-time to Revenue each time they operate payroll. Information is provided to Revenue at individual payslip level. EAADS analysis for 2019 and 2020 is based on the more detailed employee tax data provided from Revenue’s PMOD system.

The use of this more detailed data has resulted in changes to how the EAADS is processed. One notable change is the method used to restrict the data in each year to only employments that were active in October of the reference year. The restriction to only employments that are active in October continues our existing approach to structure of earnings analysis, and aims to ensure coherence and comparability across reference years. Up to 2018 employments active in October were identified using employment start and end dates on the P35 data. From 2019 active employments are identified by reference to pay dates in the reference month. These differing methods applied may result in some  differences in employments excluded.

An analysis of the impact of the October only restriction as well as earnings analysis for all employments without the October only restriction applied are provided in the background notes. See Tables 9.1-9.3.

Revisions to 2011-2018

The last publication of the EAADS in November 2019 contained estimates for 2011 through to 2018. These estimates have been revised today following updates and improvements to the process to generate EAADS estimates. Firstly, the method used to restrict the data to employments active in October has been amended to include employments that commenced or ended in the month of October. Previously employments were required to be active throughout the month in order to be included. This change has resulted in a higher proportion of employments being retained in each year, and a reduced difference in average weekly earnings between the analysis of employments active in October and the analysis for all employments, without the October only restriction applied. An analysis of the impact of the October only restriction as well as earnings analysis for all employments, without the October only restriction applied are available in the background notes. See Tables 9.1-9.3.

A further amendment related to employments with earnings not subject to Universal Social Charge (USC), who had previously been excluded as their earnings were not included in the main pay variable analysed. These employments have now been included in the analysis, subject to the standard cut-offs applied as part of the EAADS methodology. The additional employments retained include employments related to Community Employment Schemes (CES).

Results for years 2011-2018 have been updated to reflect these changes.

Go to: Main results

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