Rounding up

Putting the 2019 Spending Round into context


In his September 2019 Spending Round the Chancellor rightly declared he was “turning the page” on austerity and “writing a new chapter in our public services”. But he has also ripped up his own fiscal rulebook, almost certainly breaking the fiscal ‘mandate’ in the near-term and casting significant doubt over his ability to keep debt falling as a share of GDP over the coming years.

Breaking the rules

Analysing the credibility of the Chancellor’s commitment to keep to his fiscal rules


The Chancellor is shortly to deliver the first spending round (SR) of the post-austerity era. Although he is only setting departmental budgets for 2020-21, this event will mark a turning point  in our political and economic debates as it brings to an end almost 10 years of austerity. The politics of this SR are relatively … Continued

A man for all seasons? What the Chancellor can expect in the OBR’s Spring outlook


Consumer borrowing has been surging over recent months, raising fears that we are storing up more debt-fuelled problems for tomorrow. This note digs into the numbers and focuses on who is taking out all the credit. We consider also how the profile of the UK’s household debt will stand up to increasing interest rates in the coming years.

Economy drive: prospects and priorities ahead of the last Spring Budget


Healthier-than-expected tax receipts, the absence of any immediate post-referendum slowdown in growth and measurement changes are set to lower borrowing forecasts at next week’s Budget by £29bn between 2015-16 and 2020-21. Such a revision would leave borrowing projections for the remainder of the Parliament below those expected at Autumn Statement 2016, but still well above … Continued

Under New Management: options for supporting ‘just managing’ families at the Autumn Statement


The new Prime Minister has been very clear in her determination to put the interests of ‘just managing’ families at the heart of her government, but she has inherited tax and benefit plans which are set to lower incomes for many in the group over the remainder of the parliament. With post-EU referendum revisions to projections for … Continued

Pressing the reset button: the public finance options facing the new Chancellor at the Autumn Statement


In the run up to the Autumn Statement, the Chancellor has already indicated the need for a fiscal ‘reset’. While this has been over-interpreted as a hint of a radical shift in macro-economic policy, it simply represents recognition of the need to drop his predecessor’s fiscal pledges if he is to avoid making significant additional … Continued

A Budget for workers? The impact of the Summer Budget on work incentives in Universal Credit


The combination of increases in the minimum wage (via the introduction of a National Living Wage), cuts to income tax and sharp reductions in working-age welfare presented in the Summer Budget produces a complex mix of winners and losers. Those not currently in receipt of benefits and tax credits (or Universal Credit) are likely to … Continued

Narrowed Horizons: The fiscal choices at Spending Review 2013 and beyond


The government’s plans for deficit reduction have increasingly stark implications for public spending as their deadline draws nearer. While overall expenditure is set to remain relatively flat in 2015-16 (the period covered by the latest Spending Review) the pace of reduction in total government spending is due to increase significantly in the two subsequent years.

Resolution Foundation analysis of the 2013 Budget


The Chancellor’s fourth Budget was a relatively quiet affair. While pre-announced changes mean that millions of households will face further reductions in benefit and tax credit receipts from April, the latest financial statement said nothing new about welfare cuts (though it confirmed that departmental spending is set to be tightened still further).    

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