George Osborne’s living wage has not caused predicted job losses, says Resolution Foundation, but Britain is still too reliant on low-paid work

More than 300,000 people on low incomes were given a pay boost by the government’s new “national living wage”, dispelling fears that the move to raise minimum salary levels would trigger widespread job losses.

The Resolution Foundation said Britain had experienced its biggest fall in low pay since the 1970s following the introduction of the national living wage (NLW), which imposes a floor of £7.50 an hour for employees aged 25 and over. The thinktank found that 5.1 million or 19% of workers were low-paid, down from 5.4 million, or just under 21%, last year, bringing the share of employees who are low-paid below one in five for the first time since the 1980s.

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