Public spending· Economy and public finances· Political parties and elections The deficit the election forgot? Pre-election briefing on the main parties’ fiscal positions 11 May 2017 Adam Corlett Matthew Whittaker While the deficit remains in place, it is heading back to the sort of level relative to the size of the economy that past generations have been comfortable with. With the process of fiscal consolidation dominating so much of the political discourse in recent years it’s unlikely that many voters will be lamenting a dialling down of the volume in the new campaign. Yet it’s an issue that still matters greatly, for reasons of delivery, debt and demographics. With this in mind, this note – the first in a series of pre-election briefings – looks at what we might expect from the main parties ahead of the publication of their manifestos.