The shadow chancellor, Ed Balls, brushed aside George Osborne’s eye-catching tax cuts and got straight to the heart of the problems facing his rival – stagnant wages, worrying borrowing and disappointing revenue receipts.
The squeeze on pay packets and falling income tax receipts mean George Osborne will miss his short-term budget targets, the government’s fiscal watchdog said, as it predicted public spending will drop to an 80-year low by the end of the decade.
Britain’s recovery is expected to start running out of steam next year as the next government squeezes public spending and the hoped-for boost to exports fails to materialise, according to the Treasury’s independent forecaster.
Get ready for more cuts. That was the message delivered by David Cameron to the CBI’s annual conference when he warned that more savings would have to be found in the next parliament.
The coalition government borrowed more than expected in June, putting chancellor George Osborne further off course in his plan to reduce the deficit.
Soaring house prices are likely to outstrip pay rises for at least the next five years ad possibly for decades to come, the government's official forecaster has warned.
Disappointing news about the state of Britain's trading position and further confirmation that squeezed households are driving down their savings have fanned fears about the sustainability of the recovery.
George Osborne has received a boost as he puts the finishing touches to his autumn statement, as official figures showed stronger tax receipts from the gathering pace of the economic recovery are helping to boost the public finances.
We've observed before how the UK's Office for Budget Revisionism has been leading the creation of the alternative wing of financial comedy by satirising economists' penchant for dodgy predictions with forecasts so misguided they seem deliberately bad.