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27 Nov 2007 : Column 330Wcontinued
Andrew Selous: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many duplicate national insurance numbers have been issued in error in the last three years for which figures are available. 
Mr. Plaskitt [holding answer 13 November 2007]: I refer the hon. Member to the written answer I gave the hon. Member for Epsom and Ewell (Chris Grayling) on 17 September 2007, Official Report, column 2294W. There is no later information available.
Mr. Meacher: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the estimated cost would be of increasing the pension credit to (a) 20 per cent., (b) 40 per cent. and (c) 60 per cent. of the average wage (i) in gross terms and (ii) net of existing benefits foregone and extra tax paid. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien [holding answer 14 November 2007]: The costs and savings of changing the level of the standard minimum guarantee to the proportion of the average wage specified in the question are shown in the following table. There are a number of different definitions of average wages. For the purposes of this answer we are using the gross weekly average mean earnings reported by the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings 2007. This figure stands at £549.80. 60 per cent. of this figure is £329.88.
It should be noted that this is a very different definition to the one used to understand low incomes for pensioners. Low income pensioners are often measured as those living in households with an income below 60 per cent. of median household income. Here income is measured as total net disposable household income after deducting housing costs, adjusted for household size. In 2005-06, the 60 per cent. of median income amount after housing costs are deducted stood at the equivalent of £108 for a single person without children.
|Cost of changing pension credit standard minimum guarantee to proportions of average wage2007-08|
|Costs/savings (£ billion)||Implied standard minimum guarantee ( £)||Endpoint of pension credit (£)||Proportion of pensioner households eligible for PC|
1. The average wage is defined as the mean gross weekly pay for full time employee jobs.
2. The impacts of the proposals on housing benefit and council tax benefit expenditure are included.
3. Costs and savings have been rounded to the nearest £100 million.
4. Pension credit is not subject to income tax, therefore answer provided in gross terms only.
5. The pension credit end point is the level of income at which entitlement to pension credit ceases. This amount can be higher if someone is entitled to additional amounts for caring responsibilities, severe disabilities and certain housing costs.
2007-08 DWP Policy Simulation Model based on 2005-06 Family Resources Survey. Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings 2007
Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the proportion of those eligible for pension credit who claimed it in (a) the UK and (b) Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland constituency in each of the last three years. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien: Estimates of eligibility and take-up are not available below the level of Great Britain. It is not therefore possible to say how many people are eligible to pension credit and what the take-up rate is for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland constituency.
Latest estimates of take-up rates for pension credit in Great Britain were published in the Income Related Benefits Estimates of Take-Up in 2005/06 report. A copy of this report is available in the Library.
The following table shows the number of households in Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland constituency in receipt of pension credit as at May in each of the last three years.
|As at May of each year||Pension credit household recipients|
1. The number of households in receipt are rounded to the nearest ten.
2. Household recipients are those people who claim pension credit either for themselves only or on behalf of a household.
DWP Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study 100 per cent data
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what assessment he has made of the likely impact of the EU Markets in Financial Instruments Directive on the ability of pension funds to acquire foreign shares. 
Kitty Ussher: I have been asked to reply.
In order to assess the impact of MiFID, research was commissioned by the FSA. This highlighted that potential benefits to investors, which include pension funds, could arise from increased competition and from deeper and more liquid capital markets.
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the number of people in Eastbourne who collect their pensions from the post office. 
Mr. Plaskitt: The information is not available in the format requested.
Information showing the number of DWP pension payment accounts paid into a Post Office card account for each parliamentary constituency has been placed in the Library.
In addition to the Post Office card account, there are around 25 bank accounts which are accessible at post offices.
Ms Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the change in the number of people aged (a) 65 years and over and (b) 75 years and over in each constituency in England since 1997. 
Angela Eagle: I have been asked to reply.
The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.
Letter from Colin Mowl, dated 27 November 2007:
The National Statistician has been asked to reply to your question regarding what estimate has been made of the change in the number of people aged (a) 65 years and over and (b) 75 years and over in each constituency in England since 1997. I am replying in her absence. (167573)
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) does not currently have for the whole of England, parliamentary constituency population estimates from 1997. I am therefore unable to provide an estimate of the numbers aged 65 or 75 years and over in each constituency in England.
ONS is however intending to publish population estimates for parliamentary constituencies in England (and Wales) for mid-2001 to mid-2005 as experimental statistics in December 2007. It will therefore be possible for us to provide population estimates by age (and sex) for parliamentary constituencies in England for these years.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 23 October 2007, Official Report, column 237W, on redundancy pay, what the (a) average, (b) highest and (c) lowest redundancy payment was; and what the budget for redundancies was in that period. 
Caroline Flint: In the 12 months ending 31 March 2007, £55.8 million was spent on early release payments. Over this period there were no compulsory redundancies.
Based on the average cost to the Department in 2006-07, the overall average early release payment was £50,000. The highest early release cost to the Department, at Grade 6 level, was £240,000 and the lowest early release cost, at Administrative Assistant level, was £9,500 and the overall average cost in that year was £50,000. These payments are based on the cost to the Department not the payment to the individual.
The departmental budget for early releases in 2006-07 was £85 million. £55.8 million has been spent and the balance of £29.2 million has been set aside for future pension provision.
Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the (a) number and (b) proportion of people who are entitled to disability-related benefits but are not claiming them. 
Mrs. McGuire: Disability-related benefits consist of disability living allowance and attendance allowance. Estimates of take-up are not available for either.
Mr. Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people in West Chelmsford constituency have been found guilty of benefit fraud in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Plaskitt: The information is not available below Government office region level.
Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what representations he has received on the merits of issuing P60s to confirm state pension payment levels; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien [holding answer 19 November 2007]: We have had no recent representations. However, state pension customers can request a statement of state pension paid in a previous tax year, by contacting their pension centre. Form BR735 is completed by pension centre staff on receipt of a request and is then issued direct to the customer.
Julia Goldsworthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what number and percentage of eligible pensioners in (a) Cornwall, (b) South West England and (c) England have claimed winter fuel allowance in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien:
The information requested is not available in the form requested. We can only assess eligibility for those people who are in contact with the Department and whose circumstances are known. The vast majority of winter fuel payments are made automatically without the need to claim, but those people whose circumstances we are not already aware
of, for instance because they are not on state pension or other benefits administered by DWP, would need to make a claim so that their eligibility can be assessed.
The following table shows the number of winter fuel payments made to people in the county of Cornwall and The Isles of Scilly, South West England Government office region and England in each of the last five years.
|Cornwall and The Isles of Scilly||South West England||England|
| Notes: 1. Figures rounded to the nearest 10. 2. Government office regions are assigned by matching postcodes against the relevant ONS postcode directory. Source: Information directorate 100 per cent. data.|
Mr. Willetts: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills to which periodicals his Department subscribes. 
Mr. Lammy: A list of periodicals subscribed to by the DCSF library is shown in the following list. Current DCSF library provide information and library services to ex-DFES staff within DIUS, including access to hard copy journals. Ex-DTI staff within DIUS have no access to centralised periodical provision. Individual teams within DIUS have the option to subscribe to periodicals if they wish, however to extract this information would involve disproportionate cost.
List of periodicals subscribed to by DCSF Library
ACE Bulletin (Advisory Centre for Education)
American Economic Review
American Journal of Sociology
Autlook (previously called: AUT Bulletin)
Basic Skills Bulletin
British Education Index
British Educational Research Journal
British Journal of Educational Psychology
British Journal of Educational Studies
British Journal of Educational Technology
British Journal of Psychology
British Journal of Sociology
British Journal of Sociology of Education
British Journal of Special Education
Broadsheet (City and Guilds of London Institute) website
Cambridge Journal of Economics
Campaigns Newsletter (Child Poverty Action Group)
Case Notes (formerly: Parents and Schools)
Catholic Herald (website)
CBI Industrial Trends Survey
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