More help for pensioners

The state pension will rise for single people from next April, it was announced today.

Liberal Democrat Pensions Minister Steve Webb said the pension for a single person will rise by £4.50 to £102.15 a week. Single people on the pensions credit would receive an above-earnings increase to their minimum guarantee of £4.75 to take their weekly income to £137.35.

For couples, the increase on their minimum guarantee would be £7.30, taking their new total to £209.70 a week, Steve Webb said in a Commons statement.

Mr Webb had earlier told MPs: "At a time when the nations' finances are under severe pressure, this Government will be spending an extra £4.3 billion in 2011/12 to ensure that people are protected against cost of living increases."