By Claire West

Commenting on Ed Miliband’s conference speech, Graeme Leach, Director of Policy and Chief Economist at the Institute of Directors, said:

“Ed Miliband says that he wants Labour to be the ‘party of enterprise and small business’. How are these sentiments reconcilable with a commitment to new employment regulations for agency workers and a large hike in the minimum wage? Both measures would hurt small and large businesses, not support them. It is early days, but we detect a drift away from New Labour’s efforts to talk up a pro-enterprise agenda.”

Richard Lambert, CBI Director-General, said:

"The message of this speech is that Ed Miliband wants to position himself on the centre ground of politics.
"He stressed that Labour must win back fiscal credibility by the next election and that it must build prosperity, as well as distribute it. Trade unions and businesses both had to behave responsibly.

"Companies will worry about some of the issues he raised. For example, the living wage, agency workers and the bank levy. But he was careful not to get into detail, so there will be time for debate."