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Think of a number...

Perish the thought, but should you ever lose your six-figure salary, lavish expense account and find yourself living on the minimum wage, don't get a job as a taxi driver in Manchester.

You don’t have to take our advice for that – this nugget of unusually practical advice comes from the DTI. In a new survey on the minimum wage, civil servants reveal that the regions with the highest number of complaints about underpayment of already low-paid workers were the North West, Yorkshire and Humberside.

Sectors with the highest number of complaints, included car repairers, hospitality businesses and taxi firms. But it seems the picture isn’t entirely rosy anywhere. One in three employers investigated nationally were found not to be paying the minimum wage. And in total minimum wage ‘enforcers’ have discovered £10m of wages unpaid by ‘scrooge bosses’ since the introduction of the benchmark salary.

By the time you read this you might already have seen the press campaign designed to raise awareness of next month’s rise in the minimum wage to £4.20 an hour. But we can’t help wondering that if Whitehall spin doctors use the populist language they employ for press releases in the ads themselves, will anyone actually pay any notice?

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