Jeremy Hunt has announced he will set out a spring budget on March 6.
The Chancellor has commissioned the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) to prepare an economic and fiscal forecast to be presented to Parliament alongside the budget next year.
The Conservatives have been dropping hints they could make attention-grabbing pledges on housing and taxes as Rishi Sunak struggles to turn around his party’s major deficit in the polls.
Housing Secretary Michael Gove suggested to the Times that the Conservatives will promise to cut the up-front cost of a home for first-time buyers in a pre-election giveaway.
And the prime minister has ordered a “gear change” to reduce the historically high tax burden, possibly axing inheritance tax and reducing income tax, according to the Telegraph.
Both reports emerged as Sunak struggles to turn the tide in favour of his party as Labour sits around 20 points clear in the polls.
The Times said that ministers are considering Government support for longer fixed-term mortgages to reduce the size of deposits for first-time buyers.
A resurrected help-to-buy scheme was also said to be on the table for the spring budget or in the Conservative election manifesto.
Meanwhile, the Telegraph said senior figures in No 10 were considering a handful of major tax cuts as Sunak comes under continued pressure from Tory MPs.
Cutting inheritance tax, in a move that would benefit the wealthy, would likely create a dividing line with Labour, which is unlikely to support such a cut.
However, some Conservatives have expressed opposition to the measure because most people suffer the burden of elevated costs after a sustained period of high inflation.
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