Borrowing £6bn lower in year to date

21 Jul 15

Public sector borrowing fell by more than £6bn in the first quarter of 2015/16 compared to the same three months in the previous year, the Office for National Statistics announced today.

According to the ONS’ Public Sector Finances report for June, borrowing for the first three months stood at £25.1bn, down from £31.3bn in the previous year.

Figures also published today for the month of June showed a fall in borrowing from £10.2bn in June 2014 to £9.4bn this year.

Examining the figures, the Institute for Fiscal Studies said that although borrowing has fallen by 19.6% over the year to date, this was not yet a large enough decline to meet the Office for Budget Responsibility’s forecast for the year of £69.5bn. This requires a 22.1% reduction on the £89.2bn borrowed in 2014/15, Rowena Crawford, a senior research economist stated.

However, she said that growth in tax receipts over the quarter – they have increased by 5.4% to £147.5bn – indicated the government was on course to meet the OBR forecast across the year as a whole.

“Today’s figures suggest that receipts this year continue to grow strongly compared to last year, as was forecast by the Office for Budget Responsibility alongside the Budget earlier this month,” she said.

“The picture for central government spending is, as ever, complicated by timing issues: spending has grown less rapidly so far this year than forecast for the year as a whole, but is expected to pick up over the course of the year.”

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