Other news

Provisional estimate shows 2017-18 borrowing lower than forecast

Public sector net borrowing in 2017-18 is provisionally estimated at £42.6 billion, £2.5 billion lower than we forecast at the Spring Statement in March. Lower-than-expected local authority borrowing more than explains that difference, but firm outturn data on that will not be available before September.

Spring Statement 2018 – modest cyclical upgrade to economic and fiscal outlook

We have revised GDP growth up a little in the near term thanks to a stronger world economy, but the medium-term outlook is little changed. And we have revised borrowing down thanks to stronger receipts, but the improvement is largely cyclical. So headroom against the Government’s fiscal targets is virtually unchanged from the autumn.

Overview of the March 2018 Economic and fiscal outlook

Relatively little time has passed since our November forecast and the outlook for the economy and public finances looks broadly the same. The economy has slightly more momentum in the near term, thanks to the unexpected strength of the world economy, but there seems little reason to change our view of its medium-term growth potential….

Strong receipts point to lower full-year borrowing

January is the biggest month of the year for tax receipts. Self-assessment income tax receipts fell on a year earlier, but by much less than our November forecast assumed. Uncertainty remains – especially around local authority borrowing – but it is now clear that 2017-18 borrowing will be lower than we forecast in November.

Overview of the January 2018 Welfare trends report

The introduction of universal credit (UC) is one of the most significant reforms to the welfare system since the Beveridge Report. It will replace six existing means-tested benefits and tax credits for people of working age, paying more than £60 billion a year to around 7 million households by the time it is fully rolled…

Will UC save money?

The introduction of Universal Credit is forecast to reduce welfare spending by about £1bn a year by 2022-23. But the fiscal impact is much more uncertain than that suggests, according to our latest Welfare trends report.

Supplementary forecast information release

Since the publication of our November 2017 Economic and fiscal outlook we have received a request for further detail underlying our long-term economic determinants. We have published this new supplementary forecast information on the November 2017 EFO page.

Continued fall in borrowing in December

The budget deficit fell in December relative to the previous year and remains down year-to-date in 2017-18, partly driven by lower EU contributions. We expect weaker self-assessment receipts to push borrowing higher from January as income shifting effects from last year unwind.

Supplementary forecast information release

Since the publication of our November 2017 Economic and fiscal outlook we have received a request for further detail underlying our household debt servicing costs forecast. We have published this new supplementary forecast information on the November 2017 EFO page.

Modest fall in borrowing and debt revised down

The budget deficit fell slightly in November relative to last year and remains down year-to-date in 2017-18. As anticipated in our November forecast, a statistical reclassification has lowered public sector net debt significantly.

Lord Burns to step down as OBR non-executive member

Following Lord Burns’ appointment as Chairman of Ofcom, with effect from 1 January, he will step down as a non-executive member of the Office for Budget Responsibility with effect from 31 December. The process for appointing his successor will commence shortly.

Former OBR staff win the prestigious Rybczynski Prize for health spending essay

We are pleased to congratulate our former colleagues Mirko Licchetta and Michal Stelmach on being named this year’s winners of the prestigious Rybczynski prize for their essay ‘Health Spending: it’s not just about ageing’. The Rybczynski Prize is awarded annually to the best piece of writing on economics, as judged by the Society of Business…

Supplementary forecast information release

Since the publication of our November 2017 Economic and fiscal outlook we have received a request for further detail underlying our housing supply forecast. We have published this new supplementary forecast information on the November 2017 EFO page.

Autumn Budget – growth downgrade and Budget giveaways push the deficit higher

We have revised down our productivity and GDP forecasts and, despite lower borrowing this year, revised up our forecast for the budget deficit. The Chancellor has raised the deficit further with higher public spending and a net tax giveaway. Read more in the November 2017 Economic and fiscal outlook.