The Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has welcomed the fall in inflation:
Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander, has told ITV News' Deputy Political Editor Chris Ship the government's pay deal to public sector workers is a "right, fair balance".
It was announced today that public sector workers will receive a one per cent increase to their pay, apart from those who already receive "progresson-in-job" increases due their length of service. These increases are typically worth more than three per cent.
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has said that the risks of Scottish independence are "becoming ever clearer". He said: "What we've seen today with Standard Life and RBS are the risks of independence becoming ever clearer."
He added: "It’s common-sense that when you have something that works there will be adverse consequences if you rip it apart. The strength and stability of the United Kingdom is the essential underpinning of Scotland’s successful financial services sector over several centuries.
"These businesses are reasonably and fairly setting out the consequences of the SNP’s dangerous, risky, and unclear plans for independence. I doubt they’ll be the last.”
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has said that today's inflation figures are evidence the long term economic plan "is working."
Inflation falling below 2% for the first time since November 2009 is further evidence that our long term economic plan is working. Controlling inflation and rebuilding our economy are the only sustainable ways to secure living standards for the future.
- Read more: Consumer Price Index inflation falls to 1.9%
George Osborne is "bluffing" when he insists an independent Scotland cannot keep the Pound, according to Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond.
But when speaking to ITV News Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander accused Salmond of bluffing too, claiming he has no currency plan.
Both sides of the debate are now firmly entrenched, reports Martin Geissler:
Labour and the Conservatives are both becoming more ideological, Liberal Democrat Danny Alexander has said.
Speaking on ITV's The Agenda, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury said: "Labour is becoming more, kind of, left-wing, the Tories are becoming more anti-European.
"And I think both of those things mean you can't have the Tories or Labour by themselves anymore."
On suggestions he had "gone native" at the Treasury, Mr Alexander said that on the contrary, "the Treasury has been captured by the Liberal Democrats... George Osborne's the hostage".
Danny Alexander, the chief secretary to the Treasury, will join ITV News Political Editor Tom Bradby on the latest edition of The Agenda tonight.
He will be joined on the 10.35pm programme by writer and broadcaster Clive Anderson, the journalist Amanda Platell and Germaine Greer, the academic and writer.
The Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander, will join ITV News Political Editor Tom Bradby on The Agenda tomorrow night, Monday 17th February.
Catch up on the last episode here with the Chancellor George Osborne, Former BBC Economics Editor turned JP Morgan strategist Stephanie Flanders, historian and broadcaster Bettany Hughes and money saving expert Martin Lewis.
The Agenda with Tom Bradby is on ITV at 10.35pm on Monday night.
London mayor Boris Johnson has repeated his call for the tax rate to be cut to 40p - and declined to rule out the possibility of it happening before the general election.
Earlier, the Liberal Democrat Chief Secretary to the Treasury - Danny Alexander - said the rate would be cut "over my dead body".
"The last thing I want to see is a pointless sacrifice from the Liberal Democrats, let alone the dead body of Danny Alexander," he told BBC Radio 4's Today programme.
"Sooner or later there will have to be a new Conservative manifesto and I can't believe we are going to go into an election on a campaign to keep our tax rates higher."
Asked if that meant he accepted it could not happen until after 2015, he said: "Who can say what will happen to Danny Alexander? Stranger things have happened at sea."I don't think that it is reasonable always to keep UK tax rates higher than those of competitor countries.
"UK income tax is now higher than the average in the EU. That never used to be the case. I don't see why it should be the case for the long term and I see no reason why we shouldn't bring it down."
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander said the Liberal Democrats would not allow a cut to the top rate of tax in this Parliament.
In an interview with the Daily Mirror, he was asked about David Cameron's refusal to rule out cutting the top rate and replied: "You'll have to ask them (the Tories) why they answer those questions in those ways.
"If you ask me would I cut the top rate below 45p the answer is 'no'. In this Parliament we will not allow that to happen."
Mr Alexander also had some praise for Labour's Ed Balls - amid questions over whether the Lib Dems could work with the party in a future coalition.
"I play cricket with Ed Balls. I have opened the bowling at Lords while he kept wicket behind the stumps and I have to say he didn't let anything past him. So I would endorse him as a wicket keeper," he said.