THE Government’s latest economic figures tell us that despite there being more people in work, wages are still not keeping up with the cost of living. In the past rising employment was always followed by rising wages. However, this time it’s only those in the top 15 per cent that have seen their income increase – by a whopping 180 per cent in four years – whereas everyone else has seen their wages grow by a pitiful 0.3 per cent –down 0.9 per cent – with inflation running at 1.9 per cent. This shows that things are getting worse, as many are effectively suffering an annual pay cut of 1.6 per cent.
Latest figures also tell us that productivity is shockingly low, with eight million part-time workers looking for work full time. The Tories low-wage economy is a triple whammy; it’s bad for workers who have to claim in-work benefits and live in poverty; bad for the taxpayer, with in-work benefits now costing a staggering £80 billion a year, and it does nothing to pay down government debt as those on low wages earn so little they pay no tax.
No wonder Osborne has failed to eliminate the deficit and is now borrowing an extra £190 billion. One has to ask recovery, what recovery?
Cllr Nigel Dix Montclaire Avenue Blackwood