HC Deb 11 June 1986 vol 99 c214W
Mr. Thurnham

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what was the total cost of the payment during 1985–86 by his Department of interest on the mortgages of those unemployed during each of the first six months of unemployment respectively.

Mr. Major

The precise information requested is not available. The "Annual Statistical Enquiry 1983", the latest information available, provides information about the number of supplementary benefit recipients who have been unemployed for under six months where the assessment of benefit includes an allowance towards mortgage interest. Information about the average weekly payment in respect of mortgage interest added in the assessment is also provided. At December 1983 an average weekly payment of £16.82 for mortgage interest was included in the assessment of approximately 65,000 supplementary benefit claimants unemployed for under six months. On this basis the total annual amount of mortgage interest added in the assessment of supplementary benefit would be £61 million.