When did Alistair Darling know the contraction was so bad?
Friday, 24 April 2009 19:56

Wednesday, Chancellor of the Exchequer announces in budget that the economy will shrink about the same as in the previous quarter.

Friday, Office of National Statistics releases figures showing the worst shrinkage of the economy since records began, much worse than the previous quarter.

So the big question that no-one has yet asked is . . .

"When Alistair Darling delivered his budget speech did he know or have any hint of just how bad the figures for economic output were?"

If he did then not only did he mislead the country but he also mislead Parliament and the world. It seems inconceivable that figures so bad were witheld from government and simply popped up 48 hours after the budget.

This is the sort of question that the leaders of the other two parties ought to be pressing home and organising a vote of no confidence in the government and chancellor.

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