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Budget 2023: will it lift Britain’s economic gloom? Our panel give their verdict

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“Are you and your family better off than you were 13 years ago?” Ask yourself this, Labour says, echoing Ronald Reagan. Of course not.

Living standards will fall and every public service will continue to decay. The government can expect few thanks for preventing another monster rise in energy bills, when people are still paying twice as much as a year ago.

Headlines on falling inflation will impress few when voters find prices don’t fall, but keep climbing. “You could have been even worse off” is not much of a slogan.Out there, the biggest wave of strikes rolls on, yet there was nothing here for public sector pay.

The only tax break goes to the top 1% who are already soaring ahead while others fall back, given a bonanza on already over-subsidised pensions to prevent a handful of NHS consultants retiring.With UK childcare costs highest in Europe, that £4bn will help parents back to work.

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