asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish a table showing the standard rate of retirement pension for a married couple as a percentage of average male manual earnings, both gross and net of income tax and national insurance contribution, in each year since 1950.
I refer my hon. Friend to table 6.3a of the DHSS "Abstract of Statistics for Index of Retail Prices, Average Earnings, Social Security Benefits and Contributions". A copy of the Abstract is held in the Library of the House and I am also sending one to my hon. Friend. The abstract provides the information requested as at October of each year. Tables 6.3b and 6.3c of the abstract will also be of interest. The October 1979 figures for table 6.3a—which were not available when the abstract was printed—are as follows: