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Poverty Trap

Volume 13: debated on Friday 27 November 1981

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will estimate the number of families in 1979 caught in the poverty trap and the increase in the numbers so caught as a result of the 1980 and 1981 budgets.

An estimate of the number of families with theoretically high marginal tax rates in 1979 is expected to be available in the next couple of months. This will be based on a Department of Health and Social Security analysis of information recorded by respondents in the 1979 family expenditure survey. The only information that is readily available about possible Budget effects on marginal tax rates was included in the reply given by my right hon. Friend, the former Secretary of State for Social Services, to the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East (Mrs. Short) on 13 April 1981.—[Vol. 3, c. 58–60.] It was estimated that some 10,000 families receiving family income supplement—FIS—and no more than 20,000 recipients of housing rebates—not also receiving FIS—might be drawn into income tax in 1981–82.