Around 4.3 million working families, including 40 per cent of all those with children, were receiving benefits or tax credits in 2012, according to a new think-tank analysis – contrary to the impression often given that 'making work pay' is the answer to controlling benefit spending.
The New Policy Institute analysis focuses mainly on payments of housing benefit (HB), council tax benefit (CTB) and working and child tax credits (WTC and CTC) to working families in 2012. It points out that there is no official estimate in this area. Simply adding up the numbers receiving each benefit in isolation would amount to double counting all those who receive more than one. The analysis instead derives estimates from a combination of administrative statistics on the total numbers receiving each of the benefits in isolation, and survey data from the Family Resources Survey and Households Below Average Income (FRS/HBAI).