National Minimum Wage increases have been announced resulting in a 3% increase for adult workers. This is the largest real-term rise in seven years. Normally the Government accepts the recommendations by the Low Pay Commission but this year the Government has decided to go one step further.

Other rises include the statutory minimum for 18 to 20-year-olds which is to increase by 3% from October 2015, from £5.13 to £5.30, and by 2% for 16 and 17-year-olds, taking the rate to £3.87.

Interestingly, the Government has rejected the commission's proposed 7p an hour increase in the apprenticeship rate (rate applying to apprentices aged 16-18 and those aged 19 years who are in their first year) , choosing instead to increase it by 57p an hour.