Martin Lewis has hit back at an “insulting” description of his job on Twitter following criticism from a user. The Money Saving Expert’s job was described as framing “systemic problems as personal management issues” by an economist.
She wrote: “The fact that Martin Lewis, whose literal job is to frame systemic problems as personal management issues, is blaming the cost of living crisis on the government tells us the depth of the crisis we are in #SpringStatement.” However, the financial journalist took offence to her words and took it upon himself to clarify his job.
He said: “No! My literal job is saving people money; a campaigning consumer finance journalist The idea I aim to disguise systemic problems is insulting. I campaign against many systemic issues And yes I aim to help people navigate issues. That makes me a pragmatist, not an apologist.”
READ MORE : Martin Lewis issues key advice for people who can’t afford rising energy bills
The comments follow the announcement of the Spring Statement on Wednesday, March 23, where Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced many new measures to target the energy crisis, such as: a cut in fuel duty by 5p per litre until March 2023, removal of VAT on solar panels, heat pumps or insulation and wind and water turbine, and a vulnerable household targeted support. It comes as the Chancellor warned of “challenging and uncertain times” ahead and you can read more about the reasons why here.
Analysing the spring statement, Mr Lewis wrote: “If that’s all he’s doing on energy – it is limited and won’t impact the majority of households who will see a likely £1,300 average increase in year-on-year bills by October. My head has sunk. I just hope there’s a rabbit to come out of the hat.”
Other new measures announced by Mr Sunak included that national insurance starting thresholds will rise to £12,570 from July, and from 2024, the basic rate of income tax would be cut from 20p to 19p in the pound. You can read Mr Lewis’ analysis of those here.
Following the publishing of these measures, Mr Lewis posted a video on his Twitter account showing his initial reaction to the budget. In the video, he said “On energy, [it’s] not particularly generous. We know we’ve got the £150 council tax rebate coming for those in bands A to D in April…and the more controversial loan not loan scheme coming in October. So, limited help for energy, but I think what the chancellor would argue is that there’s the household support fund to help the most vulnerable in energy and the cut in national insurance should offset it a bit.
“None of this will offset totally the rise in energy bills which are likely to be around £1,300 year on year increase in October, but it will mitigate it somewhat. And then his (Mr Sunak’s) rabbit out of the hat is that from 2024 – likely to be an election year – income tax or basic rate of income – will drop to 19p. I’m not going to talk about that a lot. It’s a long time away and it ain’t going to help anyone right now.”
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