Minimum wage to rise... but by only 19p

The National Minimum Wage will increase by only 19p to £6.50 an hour.

This follows a call from George Osborne to increase the sum to £7 an hour and a survey of the public, which found on average people thought it should be £7.49 an hour.

 In fact, even Tory voters thought said £7.26 was a fair wage, according to the YouGov poll.

The new rate will come into effect from October, after Business Secretary Vince Cable approved the 3% rise put forward by the Low Pay Commission.

“The recommendations I have accepted today mean that low-paid workers will enjoy the biggest cash increase in their take home pay since 2008,” Cable said.

The rate for 18-20 year olds and the rate for 16-17 year old will also go up by 2%, a rise of 10p and 7p respectively.

Minimum wage not enough for London

This news comes after a poll of Londoners found more than 90% thought the minimum wage was not enough to survive on in the capital.

Rhys Moore, director of the Living Wage Foundation, said the organisation welcomed the increase but said businesses in the capital needed to do more to support their employees.

“At a time when over half the families living in poverty are in-work, it is a very welcome and much needed raise.  A strong well-enforced national minimum wage is vital for our communities and our economy.

“However the best employers are not waiting for government to act. They are voluntarily signing up to pay the Living Wage now. The current Living Wage of £7.65 for the UK and £8.80 for London is a robust calculation that reflects the real cost of living, rewarding a hard day’s work with a fair day’s pay,” he added.

In terms of spending power, the minimum wage has been the lowest since 2004, according to think tank The Resolution Foundation.

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