Local MP, Caroline Dinenage, has welcome figures released in Asda's latest Income Tracker, which show that families' household income is on the rise.
Asda's Income Tracker, which charts wages, taxes and household spending, showed that the average UK household's disposable income rose to £198 per week in March 2016, £12 more than in March 2015. This means that annual growth in spending power has remained above £10 for 17 consecutive months.
Asda's report detailed how essential item inflation slightly rose to 0.1% - the first time the measure has stood above zero since the end of 2014. However, the report demonstrated a number of positive signs for families. In contrast to the rising prices across clothing and footwear (1.4%), as well as the increased expense of dining out in restaurants and cafés (1.9%), notable drops were seen in the cost of vehicle fuel (-9.2%) and electricity and gas (-3.7%) compared with the same time a year ago, helping to keep inflation generally low. Furthermore, there was a further decrease in the cost of food and drink (-2.7%).
Employment levels and wage growth also remained stable last month. The employment rate stood steady at 74.1%, while regular earnings growth remained at 2.2%.
Commenting on the figures, Caroline said:
"I am really pleased to see a boost to families' spending power this March. The fact that households' disposable income is on the up, with a £12 rise from the same time last year, is great news for local families and will make a real different when they reach the tills.
"Combining these figures with the Government's introduction of the National Living Wage this April and the increase of the personal tax free allowance to £11,000, it is clear that this Government is delivering on its promise to deliver economic security to all."
The full Asda Income Tracker report can be accessed here.