Other news

March 2015 Economic and fiscal outlook

The Government’s policy decisions in Budget 2015 have led us to revise down our deficit forecasts, to expect the debt-to-GDP ratio to fall a year earlier and to revise up public spending as a share of GDP in five years’ time. Our forecast implies the Government is on track to meet its new fiscal mandate…

The OBR’s expert advisory panel

The Office for Budget Responsibility established an advisory panel of leading economic and fiscal experts in 2011 to help develop and scrutinise its work programme and methods. The panel reflects our determination to ensure that our work is of the highest analytical quality. Since the establishment of the panel we have held annual meetings in…

Policy costings document March 2015

March 2015 All policy costings presented to the Office for Budget Responsibility at Budget 2015 were scrutinised and certified as reasonable, central estimates were included in our forecasts. The Government’s Budget 2015 document briefly describes the methodologies underpinning these costings. In our March 2015 Economic and fiscal outlook, for the first time we have published an assessment on the…

December 2014 Economic and fiscal outlook

Despite stronger growth, we revised up our estimate of the budget deficit for this financial year in our latest forecast. But the budget is still forecast to be back in balance by 2018-19. The Government is on track to meet its fiscal mandate and the welfare cap, but not its supplementary debt target. The main Economic…

Policy costings document December 2014

December 2014 All policy costings presented to the Office for Budget Responsibility at Autumn Statement 2014 were scrutinised and certified as reasonable, central estimates were included in our forecasts. The Government’s Autumn Statement 2014 policy costings document briefly describes the methodologies underpinning these costings. In our December 2014 Economic and fiscal outlook, for the first time we have published…

Exchange of letters between Vince Cable and Robert Chote

Vince Cable, the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, and Robert Chote have exchanged letters on the issue of the Government’s total spending assumption for the period from 2016-17 onwards on which the OBR’s economic and fiscal forecasts are based.  

First Welfare trends report published

Our first Welfare trends report looks back at the past three decades of welfare spending and forward to prospects over the coming five years. We consider the key risks to our forecast for welfare spending, both inside and outside the Government’s ‘welfare cap’. Supporting documents can be accessed via the main Welfare trends report page…

Forecast evaluation report – October 2014

Our latest Forecast evaluation report focuses on developments in 2013-14, a year that saw growth pick up strongly and the budget deficit narrow further. In particular, we consider why it was that we under-estimated the pick-up in growth from early 2013, but why did the budget deficit not fall more rapidly as a consequence. We…

Working paper No 7: Crisis and consolidation in the public finances

Our 7th Working Paper explains the evolution of the public finances from the outbreak of the global financial crisis in 2007-08 to the end of our forecast in 2018-19. This period saw the largest peacetime shock to the public finances in living memory, and ends with one of the biggest deficit reduction programmes seen in…

First external review of the OBR published

The OBR’s non-executive members commissioned Kevin Page to lead the first External review into the work of the OBR in April. The Review concludes that the OBR has “laudably achieved the core duties of its mandate” and “has succeeded in reducing perceptions of bias in fiscal and economic forecasting”. It also makes recommendations on how…

OBR Working Paper series

The latest in our series of Working Papers were published on 10 July 2014. Working Paper No.5 – Output gap measurement: judgement and uncertainty uses a range of methods to demonstrate the uncertainty of measuring the output gap and considers the appropriate definition in the context of examining the UK public finances.   Working Paper…