UK jobs market stutters
Hiring in Britain fell at the fastest pace in four years and wage growth cooled more than expected between July and September, as the most resilient part of the economy stuttered ahead of the election.
More to follow
Clinton: ‘Dumbfounded’ Russian report not released
Former US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has intervened into the rumbling questions surrounding the publication of a parliamentary report investigating Russian influence in UK politics.
The report, by Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee, is not expected to be released until after the general election, despite calls from opposition parties for voters to be able to see it before they cast their ballots.
The report includes analysis from British intelligence agencies and requires clearance from the Government to be released.
Mrs Clinton told the BBC she was “dumbfounded” the report has not yet been released.
“Every person who votes in this country deserves to see that report before your election happens,” she said.
The government has said it is not suppressing the document and that it requires security clearance.
Labour to water down some radical policies
Stepping away from the Brexit party’s plans for a moment, the FT’s Jim Pickard reports that the Labour leadership is set to water down some of the more radical policies backed by party members earlier this year when the election manifesto is finalised this week.
Senior party officials are expected to push back against some of the measures approved by its membership at the annual conference in September, which marked a further shift to the left for what was already one of the most leftwing mainstream political parties in Europe.
Delegates backed several pledges including one on immigration that included free movement of EU citizens after Brexit, a 2030 net zero-carbon target, the nationalisation of the “big six” energy suppliers and a plan to effectively scrap private schools.
You can read Jim’s full story here.
Labour: Voters won’t accept Farage/Johnson ‘coalition’
Labour’s Angela Rayner, the MP for Ashton-under-Lyne in Greater Manchester, said Mr Farage had “gone into a coalition with the Tory party” which will not be accepted in “working class areas” including her own constituency.
Ms Rayner told the BBC:
“[Mr Farage], Boris Johnson and Donald Trump, the three amigos as I like to call them, want to sell off our National Health Service, deregulate our market and take us back to something that looks even worth than Margaret Thatcher, and I don’t think working class communities will accept that.”
Farage refuses to stand aside in more seats
Nigel Farage has said the Brexit party will not be offering the Tories more help by standing aside from Labour held marginal seats.
Instead, Mr Farage called on the Conservatives to give his party a free run at Leave-supporting constituencies that have no history of voting Tory.
Discussing calls from parts of the Tory party from him to stand aside, Mr Farage told the BBC: “This is almost comical isn’t it, i have just gifted the Conservative party nearly two dozen seats.”
He added: “If they believed in ‘Leave’ what they would do is stand aside in some seats in Labour areas where the Conservative party have not won for 100 years and will never win.”
Farage faces calls to pull candidates out in Labour seats
George Parker, Sebastian Payne and Laura Hughes write:
A big decision looms for Nigel Farage: will he pull his candidates from Labour held seats that Boris Johnson is targeting to secure a House of Commons majority and see through Brexit?
Mr Farage refused to rule out such a possibility — candidate nominations close on Thursday — and pollsters agree that if he really wants to avoid a hung parliament and ensure that Mr Johnson is able to deliver Brexit, the Brexit party should pull out of contesting key Labour seats.
Chris Curtis, political research manager of YouGov, said that based on current polling Mr Farage’s decision not to fight Tory-held seats could — at the margins — help Mr Johnson fend off Remain inspired challenges from the Liberal Democrats in southern England and the Scottish National party in Scotland.
But Mr Curtis concluded that on current polling, Mr Farage’s Monday announcement would make very little difference to the outcome of the election. “If he pulled out of Labour seats there would be much more of an impact,” he said.
Nigel Farage kept attention on his Brexit party and gave Boris Johnson a boost yesterday by deciding not to contest hundreds of Tory-held seats. His decision leads many of this morning’s newspapers.
Here at the FT we write that Mr Farage hinted at a broader retreat, while the Telegraph said he “bowed to immense pressure within his own party” amid a broader decline in support.
The Daily Mail wants further concessions from Mr Farage, with the Brexit Party still standing in dozens of Labour-held marginals. The newspaper is urging its readers to write to Brexit party candidates asking them to stand down.
Hello and welcome to the FT’s rolling coverage of the UK general election this Tuesday morning.
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