Page last updated at 11:38 GMT, Tuesday, 6 October 2009 12:38 UK

Maths 'failing bargain hunters'

Sale sign
Shoppers might not realise when they are getting a bargain

Shoppers are failing to take advantage of bargains because of their poor maths skills, according to a government campaign.

People are struggling to work out basic discounts displayed in stores, according to the Learning and Skills Council's Get On campaign.

A survey suggested that some would buy more discounted goods if their calculation skills were up to it.

The government is offering adults free basic maths courses at colleges.


Just over 1,000 adults were given the example of a chocolate bar that was priced at £1.99 for one, but £3.45 for two.

Some 87% of those asked were unable to work out how big the saving on two bars would be, the campaign organisers said.

Around 57% of those asked could not work out how much a packet of sausages would cost if it had a third off.

The campaign will be talking to shoppers in various Sainsbury's stores this week to promote the courses.

"This is a great chance for people to think about how improving their skills could help their everyday life - from doing the weekly shop and helping children with their homework, to improving their chances in the workplace," said Consumer Affairs Minister Kevin Brennan.

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