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Employed Persons (Purchasing Power)

Volume 979: debated on Monday 25 February 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Employment how long a person earning the average wage would have to work to purchase 10 gallons of petrol in the United Kingdom, France, Italy and West Germany, respectively.

Following is the latest available information based on average industrial gross hourly earnings.Caution is required in making comparisons based on these figures, which are before tax, because of differences in national systems of remuneration and taxation and in the definitions and methods for compiling the statistics.Minutes of work required to earn (

a) (before tax) the price of 10 gallons of "four star" or equivalent grade petrol in October 1978.

United Kingdom259
Italy (b)565
Germany (FR)213


  • (a) manual workers on average gross hourly earnings in manufacturing, mining, quarrying and construction industries;
  • (b) October 1977.
  • Sources:

    Department of Energy.

    Eurostat: Wages and incomes rapid information sheet 3–1979.