Tuesday News Review

Labour take poll lead

David Cameron has been braced for a reaction to his and George Osborne’s austerity measures. The Chancellor’s Comprehensive Spending Review has, it seems, provided the impetus for Ed Miliband’s party to inch ahead of the Tories. According to a new Populus poll, Labour was one point ahead of the Conservatives on 38 per cent, a rise of one point since September. The Tories have seen their ratings fall two points to 37 per cent in a month. The survey, for The Times, provided an early boost for Labour’s new leader. – The Telegraph

The latest Populus poll is only the third national voting intention survey from the firm to be published since the general election and gives a slightly different picture although well within the margin or error on all three party shares. This is the first time that Labour has been in the lead with the firm since November 2007 and that will surely cheer the Ed Miliband camp. Broadly all three parties are in the same sort of areas with both pollsters who operate in very similar manners. In May the two firms finished with the same ranking of second equal in the polling accuracy table. – Political Betting

GDP figures out today

The UK will get its clearest indication over whether it is heading for a double-dip recession when official growth figures are released for the third quarter today.Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is expected to have increased by 0.4% during the three months to the end of September. Though it would be the fourth consecutive quarter of growth since the recession, it would contrast sharply with the previous three months, when GDP rose by 1.2% – its fastest pace for nine years. The slowdown has been attributed to a decrease in consumer spending and mixed reports from the manufacturing industry. – Sky

If last week was dominated by the cuts debate, this week will be dominated by the growth debate. Both David Cameron and Ed Miliband are addressing the CBI’s annual conference today, with the latter making his first speech to business leaders since his election. The data will speak for itself on Tuesday when the growth figures for the third quarter of this year are published — the first to solely account for the coalition’s time in office. As today’s FT reports, the consensus forecast is for the data to show that the economy grew at 0.4 per cent in the third quarter, down from 1.2 per cent in the second quarter. But, since conventional economic wisdom is rarely right, it’s worth pointing out the forecasts range from a quarterly contraction of 0.2 per cent to growth of 0.8 per cent. – The New Statesman

Ed courts business

There is “apparently no credible plan” as to how to replace the 490,000 public-sector jobs set to be lost, he said at Monday’s CBI conference, in his first speech to business leaders since he was elected as party leader last month. It is not enough to assume that “all else will flow” from eliminating the deficit, Mr Miliband said, arguing that to merely halve it within four years would have been a better target. “I fear that that is a big gamble with growth and jobs,” he said. “Even more importantly, it doesn’t address the deeper risks and flaws in our economy. “To think that deficit reduction is the only answer for our economy is actually to be quite pessimistic about what our economy can achieve.” Mr Miliband called for a new approach to supporting industry that “learns the lessons of the financial and economic crisis”. – The Telegraph

Having told Andrew Marr that “the era of New Labour has passed”, Ed Miliband was surprisingly kind to the project when he addressed business leaders today. New Labour recognised the importance of economic efficiency as well as social justice, of wealth creation as well as the distribution of wealth, he told the CBI. “Enterprise and job creation are fundamental to the good economy and good society, and I will lead a party that understands that at its core,” he said. It would be pro-business (the CBI loved that, naturally) – but “in a different way”. I wonder if it will. Of course, when you talk to the employers’ trade union you have to be nice about business and employers. But is there a real change under the skin of Labour? Is there even a real change under the skin of Ed Miliband? His solutions sounded – well, distinctly Brownian. A bit of subsidy here, a little tax rebate there, a support somewhere else, and firmer regulation all over. – The Guardian

2 Responses to “Tuesday News Review”

  1. Rob says:

    We are five years away from an election the down turn recession is now looking over the double dip looks over the cut will come in next year and the next few years, and then the Tories will give away some sweets and sugar to the country, Labours in trouble real trouble.

  2. AnneJGP says:

    If I might make so bold, I believe that Mr Miliband would be well advised to see this period before the cuts start to bite – after which Labour will surely take the lead in the polls – as his opportunity.

    It seems to me that it’s the only chance he will have to prepare the foundations for a renewed party. Once Labour is polling ahead, Labour folk will be feeling that all they need is a GE and they’ll be back in power. Well, maybe – but maybe not.

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