Other news

Cumulative public sector net borrowing

Sharp rise in budget deficit is slower than expected

Government borrowing continued to rise in January, with monthly borrowing of £8.8 billion, despite a better-than-expected £24 billion of tax payments being made through self-assessment. Year-to-date borrowing has reached £271 billion, far exceeding the pre-virus annual record set at the height of the financial crisis in 2009-10 (£158 billion). We will publish our latest estimate…

Line chart showing cumulative public sector net borrowing

Budget deficit continues to rise sharply

The pace of government borrowing picked up further in December to reach £34.1 billion, the highest monthly total since May. Year-to-date borrowing now stands at £270.8 billion, far exceeding the pre-virus annual record set at the peak of the financial crisis (£158 billion). The reimposition of a national lockdown in early January means prospects for the…

Real GDP outtruns and forecasts

Forecast evaluation report 2021

Next year’s Forecast evaluation report will look back at what will probably be the largest official economic forecast errors ever, reflecting the full effect of the coronavirus pandemic on the economy and public finances in 2020-21. In this year’s brief report, we look back at our March 2018 and March 2019 forecasts for 2019-20. Both…

Annual report on forecast accuracy to be published on 22 January

Forecast evaluation report to be published on 22 January

Our annual Forecast evaluation report (FER), examines how our forecasts compare to subsequent outturn data and identifies lessons for future forecasts. This time we have streamlined the FER to focus on how our March 2018 and March 2019 economy and fiscal forecasts for 2019-20 fared against the outturns. The report will be published here on…

Line chart showing cumulative public sector net borrowing

Budget deficit continues to rise very sharply

The pace of government borrowing picked up again in November to reach £32 billion, the highest monthly total since May. Year-to-date borrowing now stands at £241 billion, far exceeding the pre-virus annual record set at the peak of the financial crisis (£158 billion). With a sharp resurgence in virus cases and the introduction of further health…

Letter and envelope graphic

Monthly profiling update published 22 December

On 22 December alongside the monthly public sector finances commentary, we will publish an update of our monthly profiles consistent with our November 2020 forecast to provide a reference point against which to monitor incoming data. The monthly profiles will be published on the coronavirus analysis page.

New forecasts due on 3 March 2021

Budget 2021 date announced

The Chancellor has announced that the Budget 2021 will take place on Wednesday 3 March. Our latest outlook for the economy and public finances will be released on the same day.

Forecast at a glance (including GDP growth, unemployment rate and borrowing stats)

Coronavirus pushes the budget deficit to almost £400 billion

Coronavirus has caused our economy to shrink 11 per cent this year – the largest drop in over 300 years. But the economy recovers its pre-virus level by the end of 2022. Support for public services, households and businesses costs £280 billion this year, pushing the deficit to £394 billion (19 per cent of GDP,…

Real GDP: central forecast and alternative scenarios

Overview of the November 2020 Economic and fiscal outlook

1.1 The coronavirus pandemic has delivered the largest peacetime shock to the global economy on record. It has required the imposition of severe restrictions on economic and social life; driven unprecedented falls in national income; fuelled rises in public deficits and debt surpassed only in wartime; and created considerable uncertainty about the future. The UK…

Policy costings document November 2020

November 2020 All policy costings presented to the Office for Budget Responsibility at the Spending Review 2020 were scrutinised and were certified as reasonable, central estimates were included in our forecasts. The Government’s Spending Review policy costings document briefly describes the methodologies underpinning these costings. In our November 2020 Economic and fiscal outlook we have…

Line chart showing cumulative public sector net borrowing

Budget deficit tops £200 billion in six months

Halfway through the 2020-21 fiscal year, cumulative borrowing has reached £208 billion, £51 billion above full-year borrowing in 2009-10 (at the peak of the financial crisis). Year-to-date borrowing is still lower than assumed in the central scenario from our Fiscal sustainability report, as both GDP and tax receipts have fared better than assumed. But with a…

Image of Richard Hughes, Andy King and Charlie Bean

New Chair makes first appearance at Treasury Select Committee

Richard Hughes gives evidence to the Treasury Select Committee (TSC) for the first time as Chair of the OBR alongside Budget Responsibility Committee (BRC) members Andy King and Prof. Sir Charlie Bean. The TSC raised an inquiry ‘Tax after Coronavirus’ to examine what the major pressures on the tax system are after the economic fallout…

Line chart showing cumulative public sector net borrowing

Budget deficit reaches £174 billion in just five months

Less than halfway through the 2020-21 fiscal year, the budget deficit has already topped full-year borrowing in 2009-10 (at the peak of the financial crisis). Despite that, year-to-date borrowing is lower than assumed in the central scenario from our Fiscal sustainability report, as both GDP and tax receipts have fared less badly than assumed. With…

The OBR at 10 intro slide for Robert Chote's presentation to the Society of Professional Economists featuring OBR logo and date of presentation (24 September 2020)

Society of Professional Economists webinar

Watch Robert Chote and Richard Hughes marking the OBR’s 10th anniversary and Robert’s tenure as chairman at the Society of Professional Economists webinar ‘The OBR at 10’ or download the presentation slides and accompanying speaking note.

OECD logo

OECD review hails OBR’s outputs and independence

During its first decade in operation the Office for Budget Responsibility has established itself as a fixed part of the UK’s institutional landscape, delivering high quality publications, reducing bias in official forecasts and bringing greater transparency to the public finances, according to an external review led by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. The…