Public finance data, January 2017 - PwC comments

Published at 10:26 AM on 24 January 2017

Commenting on today's public finance data, PwC chief economist John Hawksworth said:

“Today's public borrowing data contained some good news for the Chancellor, with downward revisions to previous estimates meaning that the budget deficit looks likely to be slightly smaller this year than the OBR projected back in November. But it is still likely to be significantly higher than the OBR predicted last March, before the Brexit vote.

“For December alone, public borrowing was only slightly lower than a year earlier, but the more significant change was a downward revision of £2.6 billion in estimated public borrowing between April and November 2016. This means that cumulative borrowing up to December is now estimated to be over £10 billion less than the same period a year earlier, and suggests an outturn for the full 2016/17 financial year of around £64-65 billion, as compared to the OBR's November forecast of £68.2 billion. However, this slightly lower outcome would still be well above the OBR's previous forecast of a £55.5 billion deficit at the time of the March Budget.

“The detailed figures show strong growth in the financial year to date in national insurance contributions and corporation tax receipts, but less strong growth in income tax receipts. However, January is always a bumper month for income tax inflows because of the self-assessment timetable, so we will get a better idea of the underlying trend after that.

“Overall, the somewhat better outlook for the public finances is consistent with the slightly better than expected performance of the economy as a whole since the EU referendum in June. But the budget deficit remains uncomfortably high, so this will not give the Chancellor much additional room for manoeuvre in his Budget on 8th March.”

Ends.

For further information please contact Tilly Parke: tilly.parke@pwc.com / +44 20 7804 8761


Twitter
LinkedIn
Facebook
Google+

About PwC

At PwC, our purpose is to build trust in society and solve important problems. We’re a network of firms in 157 countries with more than 208,000 people who are committed to delivering quality in assurance, advisory and tax services. Find out more and tell us what matters to you by visiting us at www.pwc.com.

PwC refers to the PwC network and/or one or more of its member firms, each of which is a separate legal entity. Please see www.pwc.com/structure for further details. © 2016 PwC. All rights reserved

« UK CEOs rate cyber risks as second most significant business threat | Homepage | 50% of the public would pay more tax to improve NHS services »

  • Contact us
  • +44 (0) 20 7213 1768

Specific and out of hours contacts