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McDonnell: Labour to oppose Osborne's tax credit cuts

McDonnell's appointment as shadow chancellor has prompted concerns among some in Labour. Credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Labour's new shadow chancellor John McDonnell has promised the party will vote against George Osborne's "disgraceful" cuts to tax credits in a House of Commons vote later today.

The plans announced in the Budget - which include a cap on child tax credit to a maximum of two children per family - are projected to save £4.4 billion in 2016-17.

Also included are proposals to cut from £6,420 to £3,850 the earnings level above which tax credits are withdrawn.

New Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has claimed that the plans will "impact over three million families across Britain facing an average loss of over £1,000" per year.

And today McDonnell - a left-wing MP whose appointment has been controversial among some in the Labour ranks - said his party would "bring down the welfare bill".

He also claimed it was an "outrage" that the tax credit cuts wee being introduced "without an impact assessment", claiming that he Social Security Advisory Committee had been denied the evidence it needs "in order to properly scrutinise the changes".

UK inflation rate falls back to zero

The rate of CPI inflation fell back to zero in August. Credit: ITV News

The rate of Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation returned to 0% in August, official figures showed today.

The rate - which calculates the changing cost of a basket of goods - decreased from 0.1% in July, and meant prices were the same as the equivalent month.

It was last at 0% in June, with the Office for National Statistics (ONS) mainly attributing the dip to falls in the cost of clothing and motor fuel.

Inflation has been close to zero for several months amid a supermarket price war and the falling cost of oil, meaning the Bank of England has faced less pressure to raise interest rates.

The Retail Prices Index (RPI) measure - which includes housing costs - rose to 1.1% from 1% the previous month, the ONS said.

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