Category Archive: What’s new

Line chart comparing Budget policy packages between 1992 and 2020 to show that the Budget 2020 policy package is the biggest since 1992

Largest Budget giveaway since 1992

The Chancellor has announced the largest sustained fiscal loosening since Norman Lamont’s pre-election Budget in 1992. In the medium term, this takes real day-to-day spending per person back to pre-austerity levels. But the domestic effects of the coronavirus outbreak and the Government’s response to it came too late to include in our forecasts, which are…

5 things you need to know about our forecast: Pre-measures forecast closed in mid-February as usual. So recent coronavirus developments not reflected. Largest Budget package since 1992 adds £29 billion to borrowing in 2024-25. Budget completes reversal of Coalition departmental spending cuts. Some legislated targets missed, but Budget 2020 targets met.

Overview of the March 2020 Economic and fiscal outlook

In addition to its impact on public health, the coronavirus is likely to have a significant adverse effect on the economy and public finances in coming quarters. But neither the size nor the duration of this effect are possible to predict with any confidence. The Chief Medical Officer has declared that an epidemic in the…

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Exchange of letters on OBR’s second forecast

The OBR is legally required to produce two forecasts in each financial year. Because of the cancellation of the November Budget, our Economic and fiscal outlook on 11 March will be our first forecast in 2019-20. We have written to the Chancellor setting out a number of options for the second forecast and he has…

Waterfall chart showing the difference and reasons for the difference between Welsh and UK income tax per person in 2016-17

Welsh taxes outlook: February 2020

On 25 February we published an update to the December 2019 Welsh taxes outlook to account for new data released this year. The report is available in English and Welsh language.

January surplus down on a year earlier

Very strong spending growth outweighed strong receipts growth this month, leaving the usual January surplus smaller than it was a year ago. But, over the first ten months of 2019-20, borrowing continues to rise relative to the same period year, albeit at a slower pace than is implied by our latest full-year forecast.  

Magnifying glass graphic

Treasury launches search for new Chair of the OBR

Today the Treasury has launched the recruitment campaign to find Robert Chote’s successor as the next Chair of the OBR. Robert has led the independent fiscal watchdog since 3 October 2010, and is therefore approaching the end of his second and final five-year term. The chair and other members of the Budget Responsibility Committee (BRC) are…

Year-to-date borrowing rises by less than anticipated

Borrowing has risen so far this year, but at a slower rate than anticipated in our restated March forecast. With three months of the year to go, a number of uncertainties remain. January is a big month for receipts, while bonus season and end-year departmental spending are always sources of uncertainty.  

Rise in borrowing slower than forecast so far in 2019-20

Borrowing has risen so far this year, but, following substantial revisions over the past two months, the year-to-date rise is now slower than the full-year rise in our restated March forecast. That said, with four months of the year to go, risks remain: January is a big month for receipts, while bonus season and end-year…

Stacked bar chart showing the in-year and growth forecast differences in borrowing between March 2016 and November 2016

Subdued economic growth in line with our initial post-referendum forecast

Our first post-referendum forecast – from November 2016 – has performed remarkably well for GDP growth in the period since mid-2016. But despite that we overestimated borrowing in 2018-19 – because the public finances at the time of the referendum were in better shape than the available data suggested. Read more about the Welfare trends report…