The NES has been held each April since 1970, and is the only comprehensive source of information on the levels, make up and distribution of pay.
Average pay levels: In April 1993 average gross weekly earnings of all full time employees were £317; Average weekly earnings for manual workers (£257) were around three quarters those of non-manual workers (£350).
The average for women (£253) was just over 71% that of men (£354). Earnings increased in the year to April 1993 by 4.0 per cent.
Average earnings of women are lower than those of men because women tend to work in lower paid occupations and industries, and because they have a shorter working week.
Hourly earnings provide a better comparison, but these too do not indicate differences in rates of pay for comparable jobs.
Women worked on average 3.9 fewer hours per week than men, mostly because they worked less overtime; Women's average hourly earnings excluding overtime were 79 per cent of men's the highest percentage recorded since the Survey began.
The overall annual increase in weekly earnings of 4% between April 1992 and 1993 the same as both the non-seasonally adjusted and the underlying increase measured by the monthly Average Earnings Index (AEI) over the same period.
Both the NES and the AEI cover the whole economy, but there are differences of coverage and the AEI relates to a later week in April.
Make up of pay: The NES divides total gross earnings into four components: overtime, payment by results/incentive payments, premium payments for shift work, and the residual - basic pay and all other payments.
In April 1993: Overtime, incentive pay and shift premia accounted for 11% of all employees' gross weekly earnings; The proportion was highest (23%) for male manual workers and lowest (4%) for non manual females.