Office for Budget Responsibility
The OBR thinks departments will underspend their capital budgets in both 2013-14 and 2014-15 by £1.5bn, thus effectively cancelling out 60% of the Chancellor’s stimulus.
Assuming that the Office for Budget Responsibility comes into line with the IMF in its Autumn forecast and concludes that the Government is not going to hit its debt target, Osborne will be faced with a stark choice: ditch the target, or cut more to reach it.
George Osborne is attempting to slash a £130bn deficit over 7 years. The OBR says we have, on top of this, to cut £17bn over 50 years. Are we going to swallow the camel and strain on the gnat?
The OBR’s central assumption is that net inward migration will fall to about 140,000 a year (it is presently around 250,000) and remain there over the next five decades. But what if immigration, instead, remained at present levels for that period?
The British public, in aggregate, paid down existing mortgages over the month, rather than taking on new home borrowing.
Does this matter for the wider economy? Interesting the OBR suggested in March that it does not.
The Coalition might argue that our exporters would have made even more of a contribution if the Europeans had sorted things out. But on the Office for Budget Responsibility’s forecasts, trade has actually come in better than expected.
High inflation is unlikely to have helped the economy. Yet the OBR doesn’t even consider the possibility that the Chancellor’s pledges of draconian austerity last year might have helped to undermine consumer confidence.
Why did the OBR not declare all its assumptions when it released its projections on the impact of the budget on public sector jobs?
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