Mike Cherry, chair of the Federation of Small Businesses, called it a “swift and significant intervention” but warned firms “are facing a incredibly difficult winter”.

“Today’s support package is the flipside of the coin to Tuesday’s Covid-19 business restrictions,” he said.

Dame Carolyn Fairbairn, head of the Confederation of British Industry, said the intervention would save “hundreds of thousands of viable jobs this winter.”

“It is right to target help on jobs with a future, but can only be part-time while demand remains flat.”

However, economists warned the support will only cushion the blow the economy faces from a second wave.

Ruth Gregory, economist at Capital Economics, said: “These actions won’t eliminate the hit entirely. That is why we think GDP will stagnate in the last three months of the year.”

How will you and your business, big or small, be affected by today’s economic announcement? Tell us in the comments section below or email [email protected]



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