asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps he is taking to safeguard the living standards of people living on savings income and small fixed income pensions.
Inflation remains the major threat to the living standards of people dependent upon small fixed incomes, and it has been a major objective of Government policy to alleviate this danger. High priority has also been given to the improvement of social security benefits. There was a record uprating of 29 per cent. in State pensions and associated benefits last July, and a further uprating of 16 per cent. is due in April, with another increase planned for December. The food subsidy programme has also had a significant beneficial effect, and those with money to invest will stand to gain from the forthcoming index-linked savings scheme for people of retirement age.