Following on from reports that a total of 1.6 million jobs will be lost across the economy as a result of the government’s spending cuts, it has now emerged that out of the 490,000 planned axes in the public sector, 90,000 of those jobs may now be safe.

Redundancies could be partially offset by tougher measures to reduce welfare spending and better than expected growth, said analysts at Ernst and Young.

They added that additional welfare reforms would enable chancellor George Osborne to bolster departmental budgets by an extra £11billion by 2014/15.

Britain enjoyed its best six-month performance in a decade between April and September, helping corporate tax revenues rise on the same period last year, said the Office for National Statistics.

In his autumn statement on Monday, Mr Osborne is expected to use the figures as evidence his cuts programme is working.