§ Mr. McMaster
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security (1) on what date the Christmas bonus for pensioners was introduced; what was the amount of bonus payable to(a) single pensioners and (b) pensioner couples in its first year; when it was last increased; what would be the amount of Christmas bonus payable to pensioners in 1994 if the level of payment had reflected the movement in the retail prices index or the average wage, whichever was the higher; and if he will make a statement.
(2) if he will increase the Christmas bonus for pensioners in the current year to reflect the movement in retail prices since 1972.
§ Mr. Hague
The Christmas bonus was first introduced in 1972 at the rate of £10 for single pensioners and £20 for pensioner couples. No Government have increased the bonus since. If the Christmas bonus had been increased in line with the movement in the retail prices index or the average wage, whichever was the higher, the rate at December 1994 would be £101.90. We have no plans to increase the bonus.Sources:
- 1. The Retail Prices Index (All Items), as published by the Central Statistical Office.
- 2. Average Earnings Index (Whole Economy, Unadjusted) as published by the Employment Department.
Calculations rounded to nearest 5 pence.