Welcome for rise in national minimum wage for young workers

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Young workers are to receive the biggest increase in national minimum wage rate for a decade, according to a new analysis.

Chancellor Philip Hammond announced in last week's Budget that the national living wage is to increase by 33p an hour to £7.83 next April for workers aged over 25, while statutory rates for 21 to 24-year-olds will go up by the same amount to £7.38, by 30p for 18 to 20-year-olds to £5.90 and 15p to £4.20 for 16 and 17-year-olds.

The rate for apprentices aged under 19 or in the first year of an apprenticeship will increase by 20p to £3.70.

The Low Pay Commission (LPC), which recommends minimum wage rates to the Government, said 18 to 24-year-olds will receive the largest rises in a decade.

Chairman Bryan Sanderson said: "The LPC is pleased that the Government has accepted our recommendations to increase the national minimum wage (NMW) rates for young people.

"Many thousands will benefit directly and thousands more will benefit from the increases to the NLW.

"If economic conditions, particularly the labour market for younger workers, remain positive or improve then there will be grounds for further increases in NMW rates for younger workers in the future."

The new national living wage will still be lower than the voluntary "real" living wage of £10.20 an hour in London and £8.75 outside the capital.

The higher rates, set by the Living Wage Foundation, are paid by thousands of employers.