Rising food, petrol and energy costs have left the average British family £14 a week worse off than they were this time last year.
Research by Asda for its August Income Tracker found that the escalating cost of living leaves households with a weekly disposable income of just £162.
The figures show this is the biggest dip in spending power since January 2007.
Increases in utility bills have had a big effect on family finances, with electricity prices in August 5.1 per cent higher than the same time last year, whilst the cost of gas had risen by 8.3 per cent.
Price rises for diesel and car insurance has caused further tightening of family purse strings in what has been described as the biggest drop in the standard of living since the 1870s.
Asda Chief executive Andy Clarke said: "It's clear from this record drop in income that British families have never had it so tough."
Have you felt the pinch from rising utility bills?
Do you agree we have never had it so tough?