Children handed pocket money pay rise worth 450%

POCKET money increases have outpaced parents’ wage growth by 255 per cent over the past 28 years, a report by Halifax has revealed.
The average fall of average pocket money. Picture: Getty/HelderThe average fall of average pocket money. Picture: Getty/Helder
The average fall of average pocket money. Picture: Getty/Helder

The average pocket money given to eight to 15-year-olds has increased by 448 per cent since 1987 when the Halifax Annual Pocket Money survey began, compared with just a 193 per cent increase when it comes to parents’ own income in the last 28 years – a net difference of 255 per cent.

The average amount of pocket money paid out to youngsters is £6.20 per week, up from just £1.13 in 1987.

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However, the value of pocket money has actually dropped since last year, when it was typically £6.35 a week and in the last year wages have risen by an average of two per cent, compared to a 2.4 per cent fall in pocket money - leaving the current average weekly amount of children’s pocket money at £6.20.

The largest pocket money gains in the history of the survey came in 2003 with, on average, the amount of weekly spending money increasing 106 per cent year-on-year.

Giles Martin, head of Halifax Savings, said: “Our research shows most parents are clearly very generous when it comes to how much pocket money they give their children, having given higher percentage increases, on average, than they’ve seen in their own pay packets for many years.”

He added: “It’s surprising to see that in the last year, the number of parents who ask their children to do chores in return for their pocket money has decreased. Earning money can help children understand its value as well as giving them the opportunity to build strong savings habits from a young age.”

The number of children expected to work for their pocket money, by doing household chores, has fallen in the past 12 months, with just under three fifths of youngsters now expected to work in return for their weekly allowance - a reduction of six percentage points compared to 2014.

Children aged 11 are most likely to have to complete chores in return for their pocket money, with almost two thirds undertaking these tasks. Eight- year-olds are the least likely, with only half expected to work in return for their allowance.

Bedroom tidying remains the most common task that children have to do, with almost two thirds of children who are expected to do chores undertaking this job. This is followed by washing up, cleaning and vacuuming.

However, one in four youngsters who gets pocket money in return for doing jobs around the house counts their homework as one such job.

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Pocket money reached a high of £8.37 in 2005 - but fell back as parents began to feel the effects of the economic recession later in the decade.

A separate report out earlier this year found that children are getting extra pocket money worth up to four times the “official” amount given to them by their parents due to “top ups” for magazines, outings, new clothes and mobile phone accessories. The Nationwide study found that under-18s managed to blag an extra £17.56 a month for smartphone costs alone.

1987 - £1.13

1997 - £1.67

2001 - £2.81

2003 - £5.79

2005 - £8.37

2008 - £6.13

2010 - £5.89

2014 - £6.35

2015 - £6.20

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