Families are nonetheless slicing spending as Tories boast value of residing disaster over

Families are still having to cut back on their spending despite the Tories gloating that the cost of living crisis is ending, a poll has found.

Just one in seven people feel their living standards are improving this year as many fall behind with their bills.

Rishi Sunak and his ministers have been doing a victory lap as figures show prices are no longer rising as fast as they were. But they have been accused of being “out of touch” with the reality of how many families are still struggling.

Health Minister Andrea Leadsom last month boasted that the country is “seeing the cost of living crisis end” and “that’s obviously cheered everyone up”. Figures on Wednesday are expected to confirm that inflation – the rate at which prices are increasing – has fallen back to around 2%.

A YouGov survey, commissioned by the TUC, found that just 14% believe their living standards have improved since the start of 2024. Some 38% said they had gotten worse. Four in 10 (42%) said they have cut back on essentials such as groceries and utilities this year, while 60% said they have reduced other spending, such as on eating out.

The TUC's Paul Nowak warned that Tory ministers were out of touch

The TUC’s Paul Nowak warned that Tory ministers were out of touch

Around a fifth (19%) said they have fallen behind on household bills this year. Over a quarter (27%) said they had taken out a loan or used a credit card to cover an unexpected cost.

TUC General Secretary Paul Nowak said: “The idea that people should be feeling cheerful for inflation easing is for the birds. This polling shows how out of touch this Conservative government is with people’s struggles.” He added: “We need a new approach – a proper plan to get wages rising by investing in UK industry. And we need a new deal for working people, so they get a fair share of the wealth they create.”

Downing Street defended the Government’s record. The Prime Minister’s spokesman said: “Obviously we completely recognise that for households up and down the country this has been a really difficult period. We have made progress on the economy.

“Inflation is now at its lowest rate for two and a half years, which means that real wages have now grown for 10 months in a row. Mortgage rates are down from their peak. And because of this progress we have been able to afford tax cuts that reward work, we are increasing the national living wage and the state pension.”

YouGov interviewed 2,137 adults in the UK online on May 13 and 14.

‘Tory millionaires are out of touch with the lives of ordinary people’

By Paul Nowak,TUC General Secretary

UK households have been hammered by the highest price rises in generations.

As our polling today shows this has come at a real human cost – with families across Britain forced to cut back on everyday essentials and in many cases go into debt.

But according to Tory minister Andrea Leadsom everything is fine and we should all be feeling “cheerful” at the prospect of inflation falling. This shows just how out of touch this Cabinet of millionaires is with the lives of ordinary people.

Yes – inflation easing is good news. But prices are still going up and are much higher than they were a couple of years ago.

Mirror readers – like most other people – can see the difference in their weekly shop and other bills.

The Conservatives have nothing to feel smug about. They are presiding over the worst period for living standards in modern history. The reason this cost of living crisis is hitting families so hard is because pay packets are still worth less today than in 2008 – with working people on course to end this Parliament worse off than at the start.

Rishi Sunak and Jeremy Hunt can brag all they like about their so-called economic plan working. But the Tories have succeeded only in making us poorer.