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The Autumn Statement: welfare benefits

The Chancellor made a number of announcements relating to welfare benefits in his 2011 Autumn Statement.

From April 2012, the basic state pension will rise by £5.30 to £107.45 a week, representing the largest cash increase to date.

The minimum income guarantee for Pension Credit will also rise by 3.9% in April, reaching £142.70 a week for single pensioners and £217.90 for couples.

Working age benefits will also rise in line with CPI inflation of 5.2%, as will the child element and the disability elements of Child Tax Credits.

However, the planned over-indexation in the child element of Child Tax Credit, of £110 above inflation, has been cancelled, and the couple and lone parent elements of Working Tax Credit will not be uprated.

Meanwhile, plans to increase the state pension age to 67 have been brought forward by eight years, to 2026, saving the Government an estimated £60bn.