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Pensioner Incomes

Volume 451: debated on Monday 30 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the Pensioner Prices Index was in each year from 1976-77 to 2006-07. (96313)

I have been asked to reply.

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 30 October 2006:

As National Statistician I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question, what estimate has been made of the Pensioner Prices Index in each year from 1976-77 to 2006-07 (96313).

The Retail Prices Index (RPI) covers the expenditure of UK private households only, excluding the top four percent by income and those pensioner households where the head of the household is retired and economically inactive and where at least three-quarters of the household income is derived from state benefits.

Since 1969, RPI pensioner indices have been compiled on a quarterly basis for these pensioner households excluded from the RPI (separately for one and two pensioner households). These indices are based on the spending patterns of these specific households, and contain some pensioner specific items such as OAP bus and rail fares. They exclude items such as canteen meals, which are not relevant due to very small expenditure levels. They also exclude housing costs on the grounds that the price indicators used in the RPI would overstate the price increases experienced by these pensioners, because no allowance is made for rebates e.g. on council tax and local authority rents.

Table 1 shows the RPI Pensioner Indices for 1976 - 2006 based on January 1987 = 100.

Table 1: RPI pensioner indices1: 1976 to 2006 (January 1987=100)

Quarterly Indices (January 1987=100)

1 pensioner

2 pensioner

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

1976

39.4

41.0

41.8

44.3

39.4

40.9

41.8

44.3

1977

46.3

48.4

49.4

50.2

46.6

48.5

49.3

50.1

1978

51.1

52.4

53.1

53.6

51.0

52.3

53.0

53.6

1979

55.6

57.1

60.0

62.0

55.5

57.1

60.2

62.1

1980

64.9

67.8

69.6

71.2

64.8

67.8

69.3

70.7

1981

73.3

75.6

76.9

78.8

73.0

75.6

76.9

78.9

1982

81.3

83.4

83.6

84.7

81.2

83.1

83.2

84.4

1983

85.7

86.5

87.2

88.6

85.2

86.3

87.0

88.4

1984

89.7

91.5

91.5

92.5

89.5

91.5

91.4

92.4

1985

94.0

96.1

96.1

96.9

93.9

96.0

96.0

96.8

1986

97.9

99.0

99.0

99.4

97.7

98.8

98.9

99.4

1987

100.3

101.2

100.9

102.0

100.3

101.3

101.1

102.3

1988

102.8

104.6

105.3

106.6

103.1

104.8

105.5

106.8

1989

108.0

110.0

111.0

113.2

108.2

110.4

111.3

113.4

1990

115.3

118.1

119.9

122.4

115.4

118.3

120.2

122.6

1991

123.8

127.4

128.5

129.9

123.7

128.0

128.9

130.4

1992

130.8

132.2

131.6

132.6

131.5

133.2

132.6

133.7

1993

133.6

135.0

134.8

135.0

134.7

136.8

136.8

136.8

1994

135.1

137.7

137.4

137.8

137.3

139.6

139.4

139.9

1995

139.1

140.7

141.0

141.7

141.4

143.1

143.5

144.2

1996

142.8

144.3

144.1

144.3

145.5

147.2

147.1

147.6

1997

144.4

145.4

145.6

146.1

147.9

149.0

149.5

150.1

1998

146.0

147.5

147.5

148.6

150.1

151.8

151.9

152.8

1999

148.9

149.9

149.5

150.1

153.3

154.5

154.2

154.9

2000

150.0

151.0

151.1

151.2

154.9

156.2

156.5

156.9

2001

150.6

153.3

153.0

153.9

156.5

159.3

158.9

159.3

2002

154.7

155.3

155.0

156.1

160.1

161.0

160.7

161.7

2003

156.7

157.9

158.3

159.4

162.6

163.7

164.0

165.0

2004

159.7

160.9

160.5

162.3

165.4

166.6

166.1

167.6

2005

163.4

164.8

165.1

167.1

168.3

169.8

170.1

171.7

2006

168.2

171.6

173.6

172.4

175.4

177.2

Percentage changes over a year earlier

1 pensioner

2 pensioner

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

1976

25.6

17.9

15.9

18.1

25.2

17.4

15.4

17.9

1977

17.5

18.1

18.4

13.4

18.1

18.4

18.0

13.0

1978

10.3

8.3

7.3

6.6

9.4

7.8

7.5

7.1

1979

8.8

8.9

13.1

15.8

9.0

9.2

13.5

15.8

1980

16.7

18.8

16.0

14.7

16.6

18.8

15.3

14.0

1981

13.0

11.4

10.5

10.7

12.6

11.4

11.0

11.5

1982

10.9

10.4

8.7

7.5

11.2

10.0

8.2

7.0

1983

5.4

3.7

4.3

4.6

5.0

3.8

4.6

4.8

1984

4.7

5.8

5.0

4.4

5.0

6.0

5.1

4.5

1985

4.8

5.0

4.9

4.8

4.9

5.0

5.0

4.7

1986

4.2

3.1

3.0

2.6

4.1

2.9

3.0

2.7

1987

2.4

2.2

1.9

2.6

2.7

2.5

2.2

2.9

1988

2.5

3.4

4.4

4.5

2.8

3.5

4.4

4.4

1989

5.1

5.2

5.4

6.2

4.9

5.3

5.5

6.2

1990

6.8

7.4

8.0

8.1

6.7

7.2

8.0

8.1

1991

7.4

7.9

7.2

6.1

7.2

8.2

7.2

6.4

1992

5.7

3.8

2.4

2.1

6.3

4.1

2.9

2.5

1993

2.1

2.1

2.4

1.8

2.4

2.7

3.2

2.3

1994

1.1

2.0

1.9

2.1

1.9

2.0

1.9

2.3

1995

3.0

2.2

2.6

2.8

3.0

2.5

2.9

3.1

1996

2.7

2.6

2.2

1.8

2.9

2.9

2.5

2.4

1997

1.1

0.8

1.0

1.2

1.6

1.2

1.6

1.7

1998

1.1

1.4

1.3

1.7

1.5

1.9

1.6

1.8

1999

2.0

1.6

1.4

1.0

2.1

1.8

1.5

1.4

2000

0.7

0.7

1.1

0.7

1.0

1.1

1.5

1.3

2001

0.4

1.5

1.3

1.8

1.0

2.0

1.5

1.5

2002

2.7

1.3

1.3

1.4

2.3

1.1

1.1

1.5

2003

1.3

1.7

2.1

2.1

1.6

1.7

2.1

2.0

2004

1.9

1.9

1.4

1.8

1.7

1.8

1.3

1.6

2005

2.3

2.4

2.9

3.0

1.8

1.9

2.4

2.4

2006

2.9

4.1

5.1

2.4

3.3

4.2

1 Separate indices are produced for 1 and for 2 pensioner households that are excluded from the RPI. That is households where the head of the household is retired (at least 65 years of age for men and 60 years or more for women) and economically inactive, and where at least three quarters of the household’s income is from state benefits. Source: National Statistics