Why, then, have people like the Bank of England’s Governor been calling for employers not to give staff a pay rise to help tackle these challenges?
The Chancellor’s response today to the reinstatement of the pensions triple lock provides some of the answers.
Rishi Sunak insisted that plans for a 10pc increase to state pensions will not fuel an inflationary spiral but he also said pay rises for workers must be restrained.
Read why he believes pay rises for workers need to be “proportionate and balanced” but a double-digit increase in state pensions are different.
Therese Coffey, the Work and Pensions Secretary, also said Britons should give back cash from next year’s pension rise if they do not think they need it.
Strikes still go ahead
Funnily enough, the plea that halting pay rises is for the sake of the economy does not seem to have cut it with rail workers, who have confirmed tomorrow’s strike will go ahead.
Commuters still faced travel misery today, with just 60pc of rail services running nationwide.
Senior Tory MP Tobias Ellwood claimed striking rail union workers are “Putin’s friends”, suggesting the action is distracting the government from the war in Ukraine, a fact the Russian president will be “enjoying”.
Teachers will also ballot to go on strike if they are not given an “inflation-plus pay increase”, the general-secretary of the National Education Union (NEU) has threatened.
A phrase often used this week is that Britain has been plunged back into the chaos of the 1970s, yet Jeremy Warner says we today face far fewer challenges than those endured five decades ago.
Indeed, many people in the property market are taking matters into their own hands in a bid to tackle the cost of living.
Homeowners are paying thousands of pounds in penalties to end their current mortgage and lock in a new deal before interest rates rise even further.
Fixed mortgage rates have risen for eight months in a row and borrowers have raced to get ahead of more price increases this year.
The race to lock in cheap mortgage deals before interest rates climb higher has inadvertently benefited those who own property, sending house price growth surging to 12.4pc.
Also, property buyers could soon borrow thousands more – and buy far bigger homes – thanks to a small, technical rule change.
Comment and analysis
Around the world: Ukraine hits Snake Island
Russian forces on Snake Island have been dealt a severe blow after Ukraine claimed a “significant victory” on the Black Sea outpost. The southern operational command claimed it had caused major losses to Russian troops after it “aimed strikes with the use of various forces” on the island. Elsewhere, a suspected Ukrainian combat drone hit a major oil refinery in Russia’s south and caused a large fire on Wednesday, in what appeared to be a fresh attack by Kyiv on Russian soil. Russian missile strikes have killed at least one person and damaged a school in the southern city of Mykolaiv. Rare access to Mariupol has given a first look inside the occupied city rebuilding itself surrounded by death. Meanwhile, Europe has been urged to prepare for a complete cutting off of Russian gas supplies as the continent’s energy crisis deepens.
‘America teeters on the edge of awfulness’
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.