Households were worse off in May as pressure on spending power such as higher food costs continued, the Asda Income Tracker showed

The average family was £1 worse off during May, when typical weekly discretionary income was £157, the Asda Income Tracker showed.

Disposable income has fallen by £8 since the high point of February 2010. An 8% increase in gas and electricity prices and a 4.3% rise in mortgage interest payment and food inflation have hit consumers.

Asda chief executive Andy Clarke said: “Last month the increase in personal tax allowance relieved the pressure on family budgets as green shoots in the economy started to emerge.

 “However, the reality of three years of near-continuous decline in disposable income means that families don’t feel any better off.

“The fluctuation of disposable income levels throughout 2013 further demonstrates the fragility of spare cash available to families, which is crucial to stimulating economic growth.”