Wages 'down £11 a week because of Brexit vote'

PUBLISHED: 16:11 30 October 2018 | UPDATED: 16:11 30 October 2018

Time to Chuk Brexit

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The vote for Brexit has already cost the average British worker more than £1,100 in lost wages, campaigners for a People's Vote have claimed.

The campaign seized on earnings growth figures released by the Office for Budget Responsibility alongside chancellor Philip Hammond's Budget on Tuesday.

Leading supporter Chuka Umunna said the OBR's report showed that the average weekly pay packet was £11 smaller than had been expected before the referendum on June 23 2016.

According to the official forecaster, by the end of 2018, earnings will have risen more slowly each year than was predicted ahead of the referendum.

In March 2016 the OBR's last pre-referendum forecast put average earnings growth at 2.6% for 2016, 3.6% in 2017 and 3.5% in 2018.

The independent experts say earnings grew by 2.7% in 2017 and are expected to rise by 2.6% this year.

The People's Vote calculated that the figures mean the average annual wage, which stood at £23,972 at the end of 2015, will reach just £25,792 by the end of this year, compared with the pre-referendum forecast of £26,364.

This means the average worker losing out by a total of £1,144 - made up of £208 in 2016, £364 in 2017 and £572 in 2018.

The change puts the average weekly wage packet at £496, or £11 a week less than the £507 expected in the pre-referendum forecasts.

Labour MP Umunna said: "While the Brexit elite in Westminster argue among themselves, the mess they are getting us in is already hurting working people across Britain.

"Losing £11 a week in wages is the price ordinary people are paying for the ideological Brexit project of Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg.

"Nobody in Britain voted to be poorer as a result of Brexit. As more and more promises made during the referendum are proven wrong, it's clear that we need a People's Vote on Brexit to sort out this mess."

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