Working in the Treasury has taught Ed Balls to keep a note of where his money is going.
He admitted that even if a job costs under a tenner he will ask for a handwritten receipt if necessary.
Speaking on Pienaar’s Politics on BBC Radio, he said he kept note of even the smalls jobs, such as having his hedge trimmed or paying a cleaner.
He said: “The right thing to do if you are having somebody cut your hedge for a tenner is to make sure they give you their name and address and a receipt and a record for the fact that you have paid them.”
He was quizzed by the presenter on whether he lived by these rules, he replied by saying. “I’m extremely careful about these things. Over my life, have I ever given people a tenner and not given a receipt for it? Probably yes.” But he says he has changed once becoming “involved in politics and Treasury matters”.
The Shadow Chancellor has been criticised as being “ludicrous” by Conservative MP Peter Bone, saying not all shops and cafes would give you a receipt for something like fish and chips or a cup of tea.
Peter Bone said: “It shows a complete lack of understanding of business. Is he trying to imply that if you are a small business that deals in cash, you are trying to dodge tax? I think it shows how completely out of touch he is with small business. There is an implication that everybody is out to fiddle their taxes. It is just wrong.”