New Chancellor George Osborne will unveil his first Budget on Tuesday June 22.

The emergency financial plan will be keenly watched by retailers because of its importance in affecting consumer, as well as business, mindset and wallets.

Next chief executive Simon Wolfson, for instance, told Retail Week ahead of the general election that the result was less important than clarity about the measures a new government would take.

He said then: “What matters is the first Budget. What business needs is certainty – the certainty that whoever gets into Downing Street has a credible plan to tackle the deficit.”

Measures such as a rise in VAT to as much as 20% and public spending cuts are likely to feature in the Budget, observers believe.

The new Conservative-LibDem coalition Government is committed to a £6bn reduction in spending, details of which will be announced next week.