The latest from the Black Country 

BCC: Public finances better than expected, but long-term challenges remain

  • From April 2014 to January 2015 public sector net borrowing, excluding public sector banks, was £6.0bn smaller than the corresponding months a year earlier.
  • In January 2015 public sector net borrowing, excluding public sector banks, showed a £2.3bn improvement compared with January 2014.
  • At the end of January 2015 public sector net debt, excluding public sector banks, was 79.6% of GDP.

Commenting on the Public Sector Finances for January 2015 published today by the ONS, David Kern, Chief Economist at the British Chambers of Commerce said:

“The exchequer receives a large amount of self-assessed income tax in January making it a very important month for public finances. The receipts for this month were better than many anticipated, and these figures raise expectations that overall borrowing in the current financial year will be considerably smaller than last year. While these latest results are positive for the UK and should help strengthen our credit rating, the long-term challenges persist.

“The UK’s ability to generate tax receipts has shrunk considerably since the financial crisis, meaning that the next incoming government will have to persevere with a credible plan to improve public finances. Only by implementing a long-term strategy for reducing the fiscal deficit will it be possible to create the conditions for businesses to drive a sustainable recovery.”

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