Ed Balls MP, Labour’s Shadow Chancellor, responding to David Cameron’s speech on the economy, said:
“Families, pensioners and businesses across Britain will wonder what planet David Cameron is on. He claims the economy is getting better and his plan is working, but everyone else knows that the economy is flatlining, living standards are falling and the deficit is rising to pay for the costs of economic failure.
"This defensive speech cannot mask the total failure of this government's economic plan and growing divisions in a Cabinet which is now openly debating the need for a change of direction. But all David Cameron can offer to struggling families, pensioners and businesses is more of the same failing policies and a tax cut for millionaires.
"We need a bold and radical Budget to kick-start the economy and help people struggling with the rising cost of living. That means boosting infrastructure investment, building more affordable homes and a bank bonus tax to fund jobs for young people out of work. And it means tax cuts for millions on middle and modest incomes by introducing a new lower 10p starting rate of tax.
"Britain cannot afford another two years of falling living standards and economic failure. If David Cameron and his downgraded Chancellor won’t listen to Labour then it’s time they started listening to the IMF, Boris Johnson and now even Vince Cable who are calling for a change of course.”