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Salaries (Purchasing Value)

Volume 887: debated on Monday 24 February 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Employment whether he will publish as much detailed information as may be available giving the relative purchasing value at the latest stated date of a salary of the level of that of a Member of Parliament, comparing it with 1st January 1972, allowing for the depreciation in the purchasing value of the £ sterling, the rise in the cost of living, and the increase in the national average wage since that date; and to what extent the salary would have to be increased if it were to be raised by the same cumulative annual percentage rises in the national average wage level.

I have been asked to reply.Between January 1972 and December 1974 the internal purchasing power of the pound has fallen by 29 per cent., the General Index of Retail Prices has increased by 41 per cent., and average earnings of employees in the industries covered by the Department of Employment's monthly inquiry have increased by 67½ per cent. If the basic salary of a Member of Parliament, which has been £4,500 since January 1972, were to be increased by the same percentage as the index of average earnings it would be £7,540.