Update (Thursday 7 April 2011) >> National minimum wage 2011/2012 announced:
The national minimum wage adult rate will increase to £6.08 per hour for 2011/2012, with effect from 1 October 2011. This represents an increase of 2.5% from the 2010/2011 national minimum wage adult rate, which currently stands at £5.93 per hour (from 1 October 2010 to 30 September 2011). The 2011/2012 national minimum wage adult rate (at £6.08 per hour) is therefore set 15p per hour higher than the 20102/011 rate.
According to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) the national minimum wage rates for 2011/2012 will be as follows:
The following rates will come into effect on 1 October 2011:
- The adult rate will increase by 15p to £6.08 an hour;
- The rate for 18-20 year olds will increase by 6p to £4.98 an hour;
- The rate for 16-17 year olds will increase by 4p to £3.68 an hour; and
- The rate for apprentices will increase by 10p to £2.60 an hour.
Business Secretary Vince Cable comments:
More than 890,000 of Britain’s lowest-paid workers will gain from these changes. They are appropriate – reflecting the current economic uncertainty while at the same time protecting the UK’s lowest-paid workers. I would like to thank the LPC for doing a good job in difficult circumstances.
The BBC’s Robert Peston comments via Twitter:
Today’s announced increase in the minimum wage of 2.5% to 608p is considerably less than current rate of inflation.
The 2010/2011 national minimum wage increase (external website) should be “in the range of zero to one per cent and certainly no higher than” the 2009/2010 rise of 1.2% which came into effect yesterday (1 October 2009), according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC).
The BRC argues that given the uncertain economic outlook, the Low Pay Commission (LPC) should opt for a second successive low national minimum wage increase in 2010, in order to protect jobs by “not handicapping employers with excessive new costs”.
BRC director general Stephen Robertson says:
Next October’s increase should be in the range of between zero to one per cent – but no higher than this year’s [1.2%]. Once economic stability returns, the LPC needs to provide a more predictable relationship between the minimum wage and average earnings. This should provide a more long-term outlook, giving businesses more of the certainty they need to make investment decisions that create jobs and growth.
The BRC also highlights its role in deciding the level of the 1.2% national minimum wage rise for 2009/2010, describing it as “a sensible figure for these difficult times and a result that BRC evidence played a big part in achieving”.
The 2009/2010 uprating represents the lowest increase since the national minimum wage was first introduced just over a decade ago, in April 1999. The annual national minimum wage adult rate increases enacted between 2000 and 2008 ranged from 2.4% to 10.8%.
The deadline for submissions to the LPC on the level of the 2010/2011 national minimum wage increase was last Friday (25 September 2009). The LPC is now considering the evidence it has received, and is expected to issue its 2010 report – which will set out its recommendations for the 2010/2011 national minimum wage increase – in early 2010.