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Women hit hardest by big squeeze

By Nigel Morris

Women will bear the brunt of the squeeze on pay, tax and benefits, losing almost three times as much as men as a result of George Osborne's Autumn Statement, according to an independent analysis of the austerity plans.

The research will embarrass David Cameron and his Chancellor as they attempt to counter claims that the tough economic stance is hitting women disproportionately hard.

The Treasury plans to claw back £2.37bn. Almost three-quarters of that sum (73%) — or £1.73bn — will come from women, compared with £638m from men, the House of Commons Library calculated.

The PM strongly denied yesterday that women were being hit more heavily by the cuts, insisting the Government was trying to help “families that are struggling”.

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