All those currently earning the national minimum wage of £6.19 per hour, rejoice! From this October, your wage is going to be bumped up by 12p.
According to business secretary Vince Cable, government has weighed up the recommendations from the Low Pay Commission, the quango which 'balances wages of low paid workers against employment prospects if the rate was set too high', and has decided to accept its findings.
The national minimum wage is to rise by 12p an hour to £6.31 for adults and by 5p to £5.03 for 18-to-20-year-olds. The rate for apprentices will also rise by 3p to £2.68 an hour, despite the LPC recommending that the rate be frozen.
'We are accepting its recommendations for the adult and youth rate increases, which I am confident strikes this balance,' says Cable. 'However, apprenticeships are at the heart of our goal to support a stronger economy, and so it is important to continue to make them attractive to young people. Therefore, I am not taking forward the LPC's recommendation to freeze the apprenticeship rate due to non-compliance, but instead am raising it in line with the youth rates.'
Unexpected generosity from our austerity government. But then again, that does mean more tax for the coffers...