The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) has completely rejected the coalition government’s claim that the budget was fair and protected the more vulnerable in society.

Calling George Osborne’s budget “clearly regressive” the IFS claims that, at the end of the day, the cuts in welfare will mean that working families on the lowest incomes, especially if they have children, will be hardest hit.

The IFS conclusion to its report that was commissioned by the End Child Poverty campaign was that: "Once all of the benefit cuts are considered, the tax and benefit changes announced in the emergency budget are clearly regressive as, on average, they hit the poorest households more than those in the upper middle of the income distribution in cash, let alone percentage, terms."

This will not be well received among most LibDem supporters, let alone their MPs, and may place extra strains on the ties that hold the coalition together.

After analysis that involved splitting the population into ten groups the IFS say that another section of society, pensioners, will also help bear the brunt of the budget.

From their calculations it seems that the poorest families are likely to lose five times as much in percentage terms than wealthier childless households over the next four years.

The Treasury has called the report selective adding that it also ignored any budgetary “pro-growth and employment effects”.

The IFS have condemned this budget because, according to them it hits the poorest hardest, whereas it has praised the previous Labour plans as ‘progressive’ as they were intended to hit the wealthiest hardest.

Yvette Cooper, shadow works and pensions secretary, accused the coalition of a “shocking and unfair attack on children and families”. The End Child Poverty campaign spokesperson Fiona Weir said “The coalition has committed to ending child poverty by 2020, but its cuts are hitting the poorest families hardest. It’s not fair that children should have to pay for the cuts and shocking that the poorest families are bearing the brunt of them”.

A nice early Christmas present to Labour from the IFS. Nicely backed up by the ‘dark’ portrayal of George Osborne in the photographs in the Mail and Guardian.

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