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Our goal at the Institute for Fiscal Studies is to promote effective economic and social policies by better understanding how policies affect individuals, families, businesses and the government's finances.
Prospect Magazine UK think tank of the year 2014.

Manifesto analysis: the public finances

The IFS has published its analysis of the public finance plans of the Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats and the Scottish National Party on Thursday 23 April. At a press briefing IFS researchers presented the implications of manifesto commitments for debt and borrowing, and for overall levels of tax and spending. Presentations and a recording from the event are available.

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Full fiscal autonomy delayed? The SNP's plans for further devolution to Scotland

Yesterday, the SNP published their election manifesto. Plans for full fiscal autonomy – now renamed “full fiscal responsibility” – remain as a medium term goal. But, the manifesto suggests that such plans would take “several years” to negotiate and implement. In the meantime, priority would be placed on moving beyond the recommendations of the Smith Commission with the devolution of corporation tax, National Insurance Contributions (NICs), and the welfare system. In this observation we examine what these plans would mean for the Scottish Government’s budget and powers, and the challenges involved in moving beyond them to reach full fiscal responsibility for Scotland.

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Education spending: what are the parties planning to protect?

The Liberal Democrats' manifesto highlights a commitment to protect education spending per pupil in England for 2–19 year-olds in real terms. Labour and the Conservatives have also announced protections for education spending in England. In this Observation, we analyse the implications of these different protections for how schools and education spending will evolve over the next parliament.

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