HC Deb 01 March 1984 vol 55 cc299-300W
Mr. Austin Mitchell

asked the Secretary of State for Employment whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing for the United Kingdom and the United States of America the increase in prices and earnings in manufacturing, taking account of changes in working hours, over the past 12 months together with the increase in take-home pay as a result of changes in taxation.

Mr. Gummer

Over the 12 months to December 1983, the United Kingdom retail price index rose by 5.3 per cent., and the consumer price index in the United States of America rose by 3.8 per cent. In Great Britain the increase in underlying average hourly earnings in manufacturing industries over the same period is estimated to have been about 8 per cent., while in the USA hourly earnings for production workers in manufacturing rose by 4.4 per cent. Changes in taxation are a matter for my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Mr. Callaghan

asked the Secretary of State for Employment how many jobs have been lost in British manufacturing industry since 1979.

Mr. Alan Clark

Information about job losses and job gains is not available from the Department's statistics, but an indication of the net changes can be seen by comparing the levels of employees in employment at different dates. Between December 1979 and December 1983 the number of employees in employment in manufacturing industries in Great Britain decreased by 1,599,800. The figure is provisional and includes an allowance for undercounting.

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