HC Deb 02 July 1971 vol 820 cc220-1W
Mr. Arthur Lewis

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will publish in the OFFICIAL REPORT the factual details (1)-(4), as contained in the communication sent to the hon. Member for West Ham, North under date of December, 1970 on the cost of living and purchasing power of the £ sterling, and bring the figures up to date to the latest stated date for which figures are readily available.

Mr. Higgins

The information requested is as follows:

  1. (1) Between October, 1964 and May, 1971, it is estimated that the purchasing power of the £ fell by 28.5 per cent. In cash terms, this is equivalent to a drop from 100p to 71½p.
  2. (2) The approximate cumulative annual percentage increases in the pay of senior civil servants during the period from 1st January, 1964 to 1st July, 1971 range between 4.9 per cent. for Under-Secretaries and 7.2 per cent. for Permanent Secretaries.
  3. (3) The decline in the purchasing power of the £ since October, 1964, applied to the M.P.'s salary of £3,250 would result in a depreciation of that salary by May, 1971 to £2,324.
  4. (4) Between June, 1970 and May, 1971, the value of the £ fell by 8.7 per cent., from 100p to 91½p. Applied to the M.P.'s salary this is equivalent to a drop from £3,250 to £2,967.

The comparisons between 1964 and 1971 are based on the movements in the consumer price index for complete calendar years, adjusted by the movements in the index of retail prices for the months at the beginning and end of the period. The short-term comparison between June, 1970 and May, 1971 is necessarily based only on the movement in the index of retail prices.

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