Friday, May 21, 2010
Good news on public borrowing, investment
Posted by David Smith at 10:00 AM
Category: Thoughts and responses

The new government's economic inheritance just got better. Back in December, the Treasury preducted public sector net borrowing for 2009-10 of 178 billion on the definition it uses. The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show a downward revision to the outturn, taking it to 156 billion. This is still a big number, 11.1% of GDP, but there are good reasons to believe it is improving. At one time people were predicting figures as high as 220 billion for 2009-10. There's a problem to tackle but the size of has gone down by more than 20 billion in the space of 4-5 months. More here.

To add to the good news, business investment in the first quarter rose by an impressive 6%. It was led by private sector non-manufacturing, which is unusual, though manufacturing cn be expected to follow suit. It has been a grim time for business investment but this is a light at the end of the tunnel. More here.