UK credit rating 'at risk'

The credit rating agency Fitch has warned that the Chancellor's confession during the Autumn Statement that he missed its debt target could threaten the UK's AAA rating. But George Osborne has downplayed the impact potential if that happened.

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Papers react to Osborne's Autumn Statement

The front pages of the Daily Telegraph and the I

The Telegraph says Britain is on the "long, hard road to recovery" and that middle-class workers and wealthy savers would hit be the hardest by the Chancellor's plans.

The I reports there will be "more pain" as the Government plans a further £10 billion in spending cuts and admits there is no end to the austerity in sight for another six years.

The front pages of the Independent and Daily Express

The Independent claims the Chancellor has "run out of tricks" to fix the economy and that all sections of society will feel the squeeze.

The Daily Express reports that Mr Osborne has "backed strivers" by boosting pensions and squeezing benefits.


Labour: Working families are being 'singled out'

While millionaires get a tax cut it is millions of struggling families on middle and modest incomes who are paying the price for this government’s economic failure.

Independent figures show that around 60 per cent of households hit by the real terms cuts to benefits and tax credits are working households.

According to the House of Commons Library these decisions, together with all other changes to tax and benefits taking effect in April, mean a one-earner family on £20,000 with two children will lose £279 a year. This does not even include the VAT rise which has cost families with children around £450 per year. And this will happen on the same day that 8,000 millionaires get an average tax cut of over £107,000. How can this government claim we are all in this together when working families, striving to do their best, are being singled out?

– Rachel Reeves MP, Labour’s Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury
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