Cautious welcome from business world on Hammond's conference speech

Cautious welcome from business world on Hammond's conference speech

Hammond said the party's popularity was based on "preying on people's worries, manipulating their fears, luring them with false promises ..."

It comes as former Conservative cabinet minister Sir Eric Pickles said the party would be in "such a mess" if it fails to implement wide-ranging reforms to its election strategy.

He said Conservatives had to "step forward and make those arguments again because a new generation is being tempted down a risky path".

Mr Hammond will add: "We are the party of progress".

Seeking to put the economy center-stage in the Conservatives' pitch to voters, Hammond said Britain could only hope to experience rising living standards "by harnessing the power of the market economy".

Labour's leaders, he said, "openly proclaim their ambition to demolish our successful modern market economy and replace it with a back-to-the-future socialist fantasy with hundreds of billions of extra debt for the next generation to pay".

"It's the profits from such businesses that underpin our savings and our pensions".

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Business groups welcomed Hammond's defense of free markets, but said the government needed to do much more.

"The process of negotiating our exit from the European Union has created uncertainty so investment has slowed as businesses wait for clarity", Hammond said.

"The speech shows a government strong on diagnosis, but weak on action".

Young people are taking on a ugly amount of debt, and many don't even know what they are getting from it. We will take them on. "We need to hear much more from Mr Corbyn and his team in the coming months and years as to how they plan to work with business large, and small, to make sure that we have the right skills, the right infrastructure and the right investment to deliver the vision of a post-Brexit British economy that they are describing".

Mr Hammond, who campaigned for Remain in the 2016 referendum, said he respected the result and accepted the Government's job was now to implement the decision of the voters.

Meanwhile, Labor's shadow chancellor John McDonnell, who was fiercely attacked in Hammond's speech, was equally scathing about his opposite number.

Healey also used the HuffPost piece to reiterate other Labour policies for the private rental sector, including more landlord licensing, unspecified "new minimum standards" and the issuing of three year tenancy terms as standard: these were already contained in Labour June 2017 General Election manifesto.

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