MSE News

National minimum wages rise today

Millions of workers have received a pay rise today as the national minimum wages rises kick in.

The national living minimum wage paid to workers aged 25 or over has risen from £7.83/hour to £8.21/hour, as announced in last October's Budget.

Introduced in July 2015, the compulsory national minimum wage is the lowest wage which can legally be paid to employees aged 25 or over (the government calls it the 'national living wage' which we don't use as it is not based on assessment of the cost of living. See our National minimum wage guide for more). It is adjusted every April. It's higher than minimum wages paid to employees aged under 25 (as the table below illustrates), which are also rising.

How are wages changing?

Compulsory minimum wages

  National minimum wage (hourly) (1)
  Age 25+






under 18

Previous level £7.83 £7.38 £5.90 £4.20 £3.70
From today £8.21 £7.70 £6.15 £4.35 £3.90

(1) Applies from school leaving age, which varies around the UK.

However, the campaign group Living Wage Foundation believes employees currently need to earn at least £9/hour (£10.55/hour in London) to live and support their families.

What does the Government say?

Business Minister Kelly Tolhurst said: "Since the national living wage was announced in 2015, it has helped protect the lowest paid, increasing faster than inflation and average earnings."

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