Ed Miliband has received a boost on the general election campaign trail after a poll revealed more than half the public think the Labour leader stands up for the "ordinary person".

A ComRes poll for ITV News found 52% of people think Miliband is on the side of the ordinary people.

The poll, which was conducted before Westminster became engulfed in the HSBC tax-avoidance scandal, is a fillip for Labour, which had endured a bruising month after the head of Boots Stefano Pessina said a Labour government would be a "catastrophe" for business in Britain.

It was not all good news for Miliband, however, as the poll revealed just 25% trusted him steering the nation's economy, compared to 34% who trusted prime minister David Cameron.

The Conservatives were also more likely than Labour to promote growth, the poll found, with 36% thinking the Tories would do a better job than Labour, who scored 24%.

"Vanilla avoidance"

The personal backing of Miliband came as his dispute with Conservative donor and hedge fund millioniare Lord Fink rumbled on.

Miliband accused Fink of using tax avoidance schemes during Prime Ministers Questions, a claim that was refuted by Fink, who was previously the treasurer of the Conservative Party.

The peer then challenged Miliband to repeat the allegation publicly, away from the defamation-proof House of Commons, which the leader of the opposition did.

However, Lord Fink has today admitted taking "vanilla" measures to reduce his tax liabilities and that "everyone" reduces their tax bill at some point in their lives.