Wages to rise, but at smallest ever increase

DESPITE wages growing at their slowest rate ever, a recruitment agency's survey of expected salary growth says workers can expect up to 1.65% growth this year.

The global salary survey by recruitment agency Robert Walters reported more "professionals" would be looking to change jobs this year, and with improving market conditions, pay packets could yet rise.

While it sounded like good news, the survey results were almost 1% lower than the lowest growth in wages on record, 2.6% for the December quarter last year.

The report noted wages growth had finally slipped below the inflation rate.

However, the latest inflation figures, released on Wednesday, showed only 0.2% growth in the consumer price index in the December quarter.

Treasurer Joe Hockey dubbed it "good news", with lower petrol prices particularly feeding the slowing inflation rate, despite wider market fears of growing trend towards slowing economic growth.