Borrowing remains at 11-year low

22 Jun 18

Government borrowing this financial year is so far down £4.1bn on the same period last year, according to latest public finance statistics.

The figures, published by the Office of National Statistics yesterday, also said borrowing in 2017-18 came in at £39.5bn, which is £6.2bn less than the previous financial year and £5.7bn less than Office for Budget Responsibility expectations.

This was the lowest level of net borrowing since 2006-07, before the financial crisis, the ONS said.

Andrew Wishart, economist at Capital Economics, said: “May’s public finances figures not only confirmed that the new fiscal year is off to a good start, but also that borrowing in 2017/18 was lower than previously thought.

“As such, the chancellor should be able to deliver an increase in health spending whilst still meeting his fiscal target.”

The OBR, however, suggested that it was early in the financial year to draw meaningful conclusions from the borrowing figures.

PF reported last month public sector net borrowing between April 2017 to March 2018 at £40.5bn was £5.7bn less than in the previous financial year – and the lowest since 2016-17.

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