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Statement a 'sobering reminder' about deficit

The Chancellor's Autumn Statement won the support from the Federation of Small Businesses.

Today's Autumn Statement represents steady progress, with a range of announcements that address members' concerns in the cost of doing business, with action on business rates and confirmation that next year's fuel duty rise will be cancelled.

The statement is a sobering reminder about the scale of the deficit the country faces and the tough choices which need to be made.

We therefore welcome the use of what spare resources the Chancellor could find to focus tax cuts on encouraging firms to take on younger workers, which must be an overriding priority.

– John Allan, chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses

Teen 'not very pleased' with retirement age changes

The Government has said that future changes in the pension age will be based on the principle that workers should expect to spend about one-third of their adult lives, on average, in retirement.

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Political editor: Balls won't look back on today with affection

Workers should expect to spend 1/3 life in retirement

People now in their forties will have to wait until 68 to receive the state pension after it was revealed that the date of the planned increase in the retirement age is likely to be brought forward from 2046 to the mid-2030s.

George Osborne has announced that those in their 40s will have to wait until 68 for a state pension. Credit: Press Association

And a further rise in the state pension age to 69 is expected to take place by the late 2040s, hitting people now in their early thirties, the Government has said.

The delayed retirement dates will help save around £400 billion from the national bill for pensions, on top of the more than £100 billion already banked from planned rises to 66 by 2020 and 67 by 2028, which are unchanged.

The Government said that future changes in the pension age will be based on the principle that workers should expect to spend about one-third of their adult lives, on average, in retirement.

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Employers' NI contributions axed for under-21s

Osborne: Fuel duty rise shows Govt on side of families

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