Inflation remained at 0.3% in May after a rise in transport costs and hotel bills was offset by the falling cost of clothes and food.
George Osborne is to announce market reforms aimed at reducing household bills by about £470 a year, on the same day a House of Commons analysis for Labour shows thousands could be worse off by £2,500 a year because of in-work benefit cuts.
David Cameron has dismissed questions from Jeremy Corbyn about a looming winter crisis in the NHS and the impact of cuts to tax credits by joking about Labour’s move to the left under the new leader.
Labour’s disarray over the government’s welfare policy and the party’s wider divisions over the best response to the general election defeat were underlined when 48 Labour MPs, just under a quarter of the parliamentary party, defied their whips and voted against the welfare bill at second reading.
The energy regulator has issued a new and more alarming warning about the potential for blackouts, saying Britain’s spare capacity margin could dwindle to zero as early as next year.
Harriet Harman has rejected the proposal that a new Labour leader should be put up for re-election in three years’ time, as she announced a “truth and reconciliation” commission to discover why her party lost the general election.
Britain could fall into deflation this week for the first time in more than half a century, the result of an escalating supermarket price war and falling energy prices.