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Ed Miliband has warned that the rise in VAT is set to cost families £7.50 a week from January 4th. On a visit to the Oldham East and Saddleworth constituency ahead of next week's by-election, the Labour leader cited the sales tax hike as evidence that the coalition Government's cuts are going "too far and too fast". The rise - from 17.5 per cent to 20 per cent - will hinder economic growth, cost thousands of jobs and make it even harder for families to make ends meet when they are already feeling squeezed, he said. "Today we start to see the Tory-led agenda move from Downing Street to your street," Mr Miliband warned. "At midnight VAT goes up, hitting people's living standards, small businesses and jobs." "The VAT rise is the most visible example of what we mean when we say the Government is going too far and too fast, because it's clear that it will slow growth and hit jobs." Questioning the timing of the increase, Mr Miliband said people already feel squeezed with petrol prices at more than £1.20 a litre and high inflation levels that are forecast to outstrip earnings. "That £7.50 a week adds up to a 389 a year VAT bill for the average family," he added. The figure is taken from a Liberal Democrat poster from the last general election campaign, underlining, Mr Miliband said, the "broken promises" of Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and the wider Government.