Public Finance Press Releases

Public finance bulletin: May 2009

Date: 21 May 2009
Authors: Robert Chote , Rowena Crawford and Gemma Tetlow

Headline comparisons

  • Public sector surplus on the current budget in 2008-09 is now estimated to have been minus £49.5bn (i.e. in deficit) compared to the initial estimated outturn published in last month's Budget of minus £52.3bn.

  • Public sector net borrowing in 2008-09 is now estimated to have been £86.7bn compared to the initial estimated outturn published in last month's Budget of £90.0bn.

  • Public sector net debt at the end of 2008-09 is now estimated to have been £609.0bn, or 42.9% of national income, fractionally lower than the April 2009 Budget estimate of 43.0%. This figure excludes the impact of the financial sector interventions. The interventions that have been incorporated into the official figures, which include the nationalisation of Northern Rock and Bradford & Bingley, amounted at the end of March 2009 to £134.5bn or 9.5% of national income. The ONS has confirmed that Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland will also be classed as public sector corporations. However these two banking groups have not yet been fully incorporated into the public finances.

  • Central government current receipts in April were 9.5% lower than in the same month last year. The 2009 Budget implied that central government current receipts for the whole of 2009-10 would be 7.5% below 2008-09 levels.

  • Central government current spending in April was 5.4% higher than in the same month last year. The 2009 Budget implied that central government current spending for the whole of 2009-10 would be 7.4% above 2008-09 levels.

  • Public sector net investment in April was £1.5bn compared to £1.1bn in the same month last year. The Budget predicted that net investment in 2009-10 would be £43.8bn, which is 17.6% above last year's level.