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Penny Outskirts

This could be interesting

I have a freedom of information request going through the Office of National Statistics at the moment, asking them what the Modal salary in the UK was last year.

You'd think it would be a figure they produce, but they don't.

The "average salary" figure used by government/media is a useless statistic, as it suggests that this is what most people have to live on, when the reality, it would seem, is something quite different.

Guesses on what it will be? I reckon about 15kno smilies
Chez

I'd reckon so, Penny. Somewhere around that.

Isn't the average around 23k now?no smilies
T.G

I bet it's a bit less I'd guess around 240 - 260 quid a week is the average pay packet so somewhere around 13k

ETA: I hope I'm wrongno smilies
Penny Outskirts



Isn't the average around 23k now?


Depends whether you have tits or not :wink:no smilies
Bebo



Isn't the average around 23k now?


Depends whether you have tits or not :wink:

Do tits affect your ability to calculate averages then?no smilies
vegplot



Isn't the average around 23k now?

Depends whether you have tits or not :wink:

Do tits affect your ability to calculate averages then?

I have single source evidence that it could affect one's ability to do percentages.no smilies
JB

Re: This could be interesting

I have a freedom of information request going through the Office of National Statistics at the moment, asking them what the Modal salary in the UK was last year.

You'd think it would be a figure they produce, but they don't.

No FOI request needed

http://www.statistics.gov.uk/cci/nugget.asp?id=285

Median salary is 26000pa

or http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_labour/ashe-2010/2010-all-employees.pdf for a more complete breakdown. (which interesting shows a lower median apparently for the same year)

Modal figures wouldn't really mean much because that could be thrown out by the breakdown of salary groups and the distribution of salaries is so skewed at high values (even if lots of people earn a high salary it's unlikely that a high salary would be the modal result unless you use unequal salary ranges to get your modal value)no smilies
Dee J

And here was me thinking Modal was a type of cellulose textile! :lol:

Quick google later...

Ah- so presumably the most common salary...

So are you talking equivalent full time salary, or just actual salary independent of hours worked?

Deeno smilies
Penny Outskirts

Re: This could be interesting

I have a freedom of information request going through the Office of National Statistics at the moment, asking them what the Modal salary in the UK was last year.

You'd think it would be a figure they produce, but they don't.

No FOI request needed

http://www.statistics.gov.uk/cci/nugget.asp?id=285

Median salary is 26000pa

or http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_labour/ashe-2010/2010-all-employees.pdf for a more complete breakdown. (which interesting shows a lower median apparently for the same year)

Modal figures wouldn't really mean much because that could be thrown out by the breakdown of salary groups and the distribution of salaries is so skewed at high values (even if lots of people earn a high salary it's unlikely that a high salary would be the modal result unless you use unequal salary ranges to get your modal value)

No no no - modal is the most frequently occurring salary, therefore the one nearest to which most of the population have to survive on.

The median is a completely different figure which really is skewed by very high and very low salaries.no smilies
Penny Outskirts

And here was me thinking Modal was a type of cellulose textile! :lol:

Quick google later...

Ah- so presumably the most common salary...

So are you talking equivalent full time salary, or just actual salary independent of hours worked?

Dee

The most common salary is a very good way of putting it. I've asked for actual salary, so we'll see how they define it. If they ask which one I want, I'll ask for both :)no smilies
Penny Outskirts



Isn't the average around 23k now?

Depends whether you have tits or not :wink:

Do tits affect your ability to calculate averages then?

I have single source evidence that it could affect one's ability to do percentages.

:lol:no smilies
Treacodactyl

Re: This could be interesting

No no no - modal is the most frequently occurring salary, therefore the one nearest to which most of the population have to survive on.

Isn't that going to be zero or will it only include people being paid a salary? In which case does that not exclude self employed people?no smilies
kirstyfern

13-14K is the 'modal salary' round here!no smilies Penny Outskirts

Re: This could be interesting

No no no - modal is the most frequently occurring salary, therefore the one nearest to which most of the population have to survive on.

Isn't that going to be zero or will it only include people being paid a salary? In which case does that not exclude self employed people?

It's based on the figures that the ONS use for the average salaryno smilies
JB

Re: This could be interesting

I have a freedom of information request going through the Office of National Statistics at the moment, asking them what the Modal salary in the UK was last year.

You'd think it would be a figure they produce, but they don't.

No FOI request needed

http://www.statistics.gov.uk/cci/nugget.asp?id=285

Median salary is 26000pa

or http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_labour/ashe-2010/2010-all-employees.pdf for a more complete breakdown. (which interesting shows a lower median apparently for the same year)

Modal figures wouldn't really mean much because that could be thrown out by the breakdown of salary groups and the distribution of salaries is so skewed at high values (even if lots of people earn a high salary it's unlikely that a high salary would be the modal result unless you use unequal salary ranges to get your modal value)

No no no - modal is the most frequently occurring salary, therefore the one nearest to which most of the population have to survive on.

The median is a completely different figure which really is skewed by very high and very low salaries.

But because of the way the distribution is skewed the modal figure will vary according to the way you choose to group salaries. Salaries have to be grouped because salary is a continuous variable (1).

e.g. if a group of people have salaries of 10.2k, 10.5k 10.7k,12.3k, 35k, 40.3k 40.9k, 41.1k, 41.3k, 52k, 63k the the distribution is;

10-11k 3 people
11-12k 0 people
12-13k 1 person
...
40-41k 2 people
41-42k 2 people

so the modal salary is 10-11k. But group it differently and the distribution is;

10-12k 3 people
12-14k 1 person
...
40-42k 4 people

and the modal salary is 40-42k. Mathmatically both are right

Modal results are not really a suitable way to analyse continuous data, or data that has skewed grouping patterns. Because salaries are likely to have small intervals at the lower end of the salary range it is particularly prone to that (i.e. the same percentage difference at 10K can have two salaries in the same salary range whereas that percentage difference at 40k would put them in different salary ranges)

I see what you're trying to get at but there is no single correct 'modal' result for anything other than disrete data. Might it be better to use the percentile breakdowns which are available?

(1 - actually it's not but because it can vary by a single penny within a range which can cover hundreds of thousands of pounds it's needs to treated as one.)no smilies
Penny Outskirts

Just had a response from them saying that the information is exempt as it is apparently something they can only do via their bespoke service.

I've asked for a quote :roll:no smilies
Penny Outskirts

Re: This could be interesting

I have a freedom of information request going through the Office of National Statistics at the moment, asking them what the Modal salary in the UK was last year.

You'd think it would be a figure they produce, but they don't.

No FOI request needed

http://www.statistics.gov.uk/cci/nugget.asp?id=285

Median salary is 26000pa

or http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_labour/ashe-2010/2010-all-employees.pdf for a more complete breakdown. (which interesting shows a lower median apparently for the same year)

Modal figures wouldn't really mean much because that could be thrown out by the breakdown of salary groups and the distribution of salaries is so skewed at high values (even if lots of people earn a high salary it's unlikely that a high salary would be the modal result unless you use unequal salary ranges to get your modal value)

No no no - modal is the most frequently occurring salary, therefore the one nearest to which most of the population have to survive on.

The median is a completely different figure which really is skewed by very high and very low salaries.

But because of the way the distribution is skewed the modal figure will vary according to the way you choose to group salaries. Salaries have to be grouped because salary is a continuous variable (1).

e.g. if a group of people have salaries of 10.2k, 10.5k 10.7k,12.3k, 35k, 40.3k 40.9k, 41.1k, 41.3k, 52k, 63k the the distribution is;

10-11k 3 people
11-12k 0 people
12-13k 1 person
...
40-41k 2 people
41-42k 2 people

so the modal salary is 10-11k. But group it differently and the distribution is;

10-12k 3 people
12-14k 1 person
...
40-42k 4 people

and the modal salary is 40-42k. Mathmatically both are right

Modal results are not really a suitable way to analyse continuous data, or data that has skewed grouping patterns. Because salaries are likely to have small intervals at the lower end of the salary range it is particularly prone to that (i.e. the same percentage difference at 10K can have two salaries in the same salary range whereas that percentage difference at 40k would put them in different salary ranges)

1 - actually it's not but because it can vary by a single penny within a range which can cover hundreds of thousands of pounds it's practical to treat it as one.

I see what you're trying to get at but there is no single correct 'modal' result for anything other than disrete data. Might it be better to use the percentile breakdowns which are available?

All that works beautifully if you have one or two values, as your example shows, but when you have many millions of figures, and do it to the nearest 500 or 1000, which is what I've asked for.no smilies
JB

Re: This could be interesting

All that works beautifully if you have one or two values, as your example shows, but when you have many millions of figures, and do it to the nearest 500 or 1000, which is what I've asked for.

The same effect applies if you have millions of data points, in fact it's more likely to occur then as the skewing of the data is more obvious and consistent, for example (making up numbers to illustrate the point)

10-12k 1 million
12k-14k 1.5 million
14-16k 2.5 million
...
40-42k 0.9 million
42-44k 0.9 million
44-46k 0.9 million
46-48k 0.9 million
48-50k 0.9 million

Modal result is 14-16k, but most people are on 40-50k. The long tail on high salaries means that they will never appear in the modal data if you use equal salary groups. Use unequal salary groups to address that and you might as well use the percentile breakdown.

(this is where being able to post a quick sketch would help)no smilies
Penny Outskirts

What we need is a bell curve, but the chance of getting that are pretty remote.

I do understand what you're saying - I just don't think the figures will come out like that.no smilies
JB

What we need is a bell curve, but the chance of getting that are pretty remote.

I do understand what you're saying - I just don't think the figures will come out like that.

It does come out like that. e.g. from the figures at http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_labour/ashe-2010/2010-all-employees.pdf the percentile breakdowns are

10% 6480
25% 11076
75% 32665
90% 46428

so 15% of the population have a salary in a 4500 wide bracket and 15% of the population have a salary in a 14000 wide bracket. Use equal salary groups to determine the mode and you are guaranteed to get the lower result even though there are the same numbers of people those groups.no smilies
Penny Outskirts

Those are not actual figures, they are estimates based on a sample of about 24 thousand jobs aren't they?

Actually, just checked. It's based on 181,000 jobs. What a load of twaddle. :xno smilies
oldish chris

Re: This could be interesting


No no no - modal is the most frequently occurring salary, therefore the one nearest to which most of the population have to survive on.


If only things were that simple. However, am I correct in thinking that many people aren't in full time work and there are many who have "portfolio" employment, i.e. more than 1 part time job. Then there are us pensioners (millions of us dragging the economy down). Regarding the impact of bosoms on earnings, I understand that a disproportionate number of part-timers are ladies.

At a guess, the largest group salary-wise are those of us without a salary.no smilies
JB

Those are not actual figures, they are estimates based on a sample of about 24 thousand jobs aren't they?

A random sample of 1% of PAYE records. So a sample set of about a quarter of a million, so it should be pretty accurate. It will have missed the black economy and those who for some legitimate reason are outside of the PAYE system, not sure how you could meaningfully measure those though.no smilies
Bebo

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Income_in_the_United_Kingdom#Percentile_points_for_income_of_individuals_before_tax

That of any interest?no smilies
Penny Outskirts

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:British_household_income.jpg

Now that's the sort of thing :)

But up to date.no smilies
JB

Actually, just checked. It's based on 181,000 jobs. What a load of twaddle. :x

Twaddle? Why do you say twaddle? Even if it's not representative for one reason or another, such as the black economy or undeclared offshore earnings, you're not going to get a different result from a FOI to the same department with the same underlying data.no smilies
crofter

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:British_household_income.jpg

Now that's the sort of thing :)

But up to date.

DINKS?

Quote:
Post Tax Household Income (Britain, households with two adults, no children, 2006)
no smilies
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