Wages.

Oral Answers to Questions — Scotland. – in the House of Commons on 27th July 1927.

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Photo of Lieut-Colonel Sir Gilbert Acland-Troyte Lieut-Colonel Sir Gilbert Acland-Troyte , Tiverton

51.

asked the Secretary for Mines what is the percentage increase in colliery workers' average earnings per shift over those of July, 1914; how this percentage compares with the increase in the cost of living; and what the same comparison has been at other periods since the end of Government control?

Photo of Mr George Lane-Fox Mr George Lane-Fox , Barkston Ash

The latest figure that I have of the average earnings per shift of colliery workers relates to the month of

permission, to circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Following is the statement:

April last. At the present time the figure would be rather lower, but during April the increase of earnings over June, 1914, was 62 per cent. and the increase in the cost of living was 65 per cent. In answer to the last part of the question, I am circulating in the OFFICIAL REPORT a table which gives the information asked for since the beginning of 1922.

Photo of Mr Thomas Williams Mr Thomas Williams , Don Valley

Is it not a fact that the figures already available indicate that the wages of almost all the miners of Great Britain are at the minimum; that the figures given by the right hon. Gentleman are over an exceptional period, and are totally different from the facts as they exist to-day?

Photo of Mr George Lane-Fox Mr George Lane-Fox , Barkston Ash

The figures which I have given are not over an exceptional period. The comparison is between the present time and the period before the War.

Photo of Sir Philip Colfox Sir Philip Colfox , Dorset Western

Can the right hon. Gentleman say how those figures compare with the corresponding figures relating to agricultural workers?

Photo of Mr Thomas Williams Mr Thomas Williams , Don Valley

Is it not a fact that the average wages of mine workers today are approximately 30 per cent. over pre-War wages, while the cost of living is 60 per cent. over the pre-War figures according to the statistics of the Labour Ministry?

Photo of Mr George Lane-Fox Mr George Lane-Fox , Barkston Ash

No, Sir. The hon. Gentleman's figures are quite wrong, and the figures I have given are absolutely correct. With regard to agricultural workers, I am afraid that I have not got the figures.

Photo of Mr Wilfred Paling Mr Wilfred Paling , Doncaster

Do the figures not prove than the miners are getting less wages than at any time since 1914?

CHANGES in the Earnings of Coal Miners and in the general Cost of Living in each quarter from 1922.
Period.Earnings per Shift.
Average AmountPercentage Increase on July,1914.Cost of Living: Percentage Increase on July,1914.*
1922.s.d.Per cent.Per cent.
1st Quarter117087
2nd Quarter105882
3rd Quarter944480
4th Quarter94679
1923
1st Quarter94976
2nd Quarter95171
3rd Quarter106472
4th Quarter105976
1924.
1st Quarter102¾15877
2nd Quarter1011¼6971
3rd Quarter1010¼6872
4th Quarter1076379
1925.
1st Quarter106478
2nd Quarter106373
3rd Quarter106074
4th Quarter106176
1926.
1st Quarter106072
April106072
May-DecemberDispute at Mines.
1927.
April1066265
*Mean of four consecutive ascertainments; e.g., mean 1st January, 1st February, 1st March and 1st April=Quarter ended March.