HC Deb 03 March 2000 vol 345 cc426-7W
Mr. Flynn

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what estimate he has made of the income of the poorest pensioners in(a) 1997–98 and (b) 2000–01. [111811]

Mr. Rooker

The information is not available in the format requested. Such information as is available is as follows:

The median income among the poorest fifth of pensioner couples in 1997–98 was £126 per week. The median among the poorest fifth of single pensioners was £68 per week.


  1. 1. Information is for 1997–98, the latest year available. Forecasts are not available for 2000–01.
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  3. 2. Single pensioners are defined as single (non-cohabiting) people over state pension age (65 for men, 60 for women); pensioner couples are defined as couples (married or cohabiting) where the man is over state pension age.
  4. 3. Estimates of incomes refer to net income before housing costs, expressed in July 1997 prices.
  5. 4. Estimates are rounded to the nearest £ per week, although they are not necessarily accurate to that degree.
  6. 5. For the purposes of this analysis, the 'poorest' are defined as the bottom fifth of the pensioner couples income distribution and the bottom fifth of the single pensioners income distribution, calculated on the net income before housing costs measure. Figures are not available for the distribution of pensioner couples and single pensioners combined.
  7. 6. The median income for a given group of people, or couples, is the income of the person or couple exactly in the income distribution. Thus for a given group, half the people or couples have an income higher than the median and have an income lower than the median.


Family Resources Survey 1997–98.

Mr. Sarwar

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what(a) current measures are in place and (b) future proposals he has to ensure the senior citizens claim their full benefit entitlement. [111094]

Mr. Rooker

We are committed to taking action to find more effective ways of encouraging eligible pensioners to claim their benefit entitlement. We will be announcing our plans, to encourage pensioners to take-up their entitlement to their minimum income guarantee, shortly.