Jay's Journal

Labour’s minimum wage announcement is much weaker than it seems

Posted on: September 21, 2014

It won’t even be worth anything come 2020 – we need the minimum wage rise to happen as soon as the election is decided, in the here and now, when people are desperate for it…

alittleecon

Ed Miliband goes into this week’s Labour Party Conference with another ‘big’ announcement. He is pledging to raise the minimum wage to £8 an hour. The minimum wage will be £6.50 an hour from October 1st this year, so on the face of it, that looks like a big rise. However, the £8 figure is what it will be in 2020. Labour want to raise it in stages in consultation with business. £8 an hour would be 23% rise on the current rate, but that doesn’t take inflation into account. To keep the minimum wage fixed in real terms, it must rise by inflation each year. So if Labour were to simply fix the minimum wage in real terms up to 2020, what would it’s value be?

If we assume inflation of 2% a year, by 2020, the minimum wage would be £7.32 an hour. With 3% it would be…

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