Real wages in every region in the UK are lower now than when the Tories came to power in 2010, analysis by the Labour Party has found.
Wages adjusted for inflation are down by an average of 5%, leaving people £1,600 a year worse off than they were in 2010.
The data, from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), also shows that while wages in London remain the highest in the country, they have fallen by an average of 6%.
The figures by Labour highlight the scale of the cost of living crisis that is hitting UK households and forcing swathes of public sector workers out on strike to demand pay rises above inflation, which currently stands at 10.7%.
The government has blamed the bleak economic picture on Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and the cost of the Covid pandemic for putting up prices for consumers.
Labour claims that had the economy continued to grow at the same rate as when it was last in government, there would be at least £30 billion more to spend on public services without the need to raise taxes.
Shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves told HuffPost UK: “These figures don’t just underline a lack of growth under the Tories.
“They show the complete failure over 12 years to build an economy that actually works in the interests of working people.
“Married with the billions upon billions of taxpayer money that has been wasted on undelivered projects, crony contracts, unsafe PPE and Tory vanity projects, it shows just what irresponsible stewards of the economy the Conservatives are.
“Labour will stabilise our economy, and we will get it growing with our green prosperity plan and our active partnership with British businesses.”
Last month the ONS said that the economy grew by 0.5% in October after shrinking by 0.3% in the three months to September.
The uptick in growth in October has still not calmed fears of a recession, defined as a contraction of the economy for two three-month periods in a row.
Analysts have pointed out that the growth experienced in October was mainly because the UK experienced a huge economic dip following the death of Queen’s Elizabeth, which created an additional bank holiday, and Liz Truss’s mini-Budget which caused market turmoil.
The Bank of England warned at the end of last year that the UK was likely to fall into a recession that would last until mid 2024— the longest in 100 years.
Figures released by the British Retail Consortium this morning showed that fresh food prices rose at a record rate in December, with overall food inflation up to 13.3%.
A Treasury spokesperson said: “We are committed to ensuring wages go further and people can keep more of what they earn.
“We have already increased the national living wage meaning an extra £1,600 a year for a full-time worker.
“Since 2010, we have also increased the tax-free allowances for both income tax and national insurance by more than inflation — roughly doubling them in cash terms to take millions more people out of paying tax altogether.
“However, high inflation driven by Putin’s invasion of Ukraine is slowing economic growth across the world and no country is immune. But we have a plan that will halve inflation this year, while laying the foundations for long-term growth through record investment in infrastructure and new industries.”