UK Budget Surplus Hits Record High

RTTNews | 59 days ago
UK Budget Surplus Hits Record High

(RTTNews) - Britain registered a record budget surplus in January on self-assessed tax but the excess remained below the government's estimate, official data revealed Wednesday.

Public sector net borrowing, or PSNB, excluding public sector banks was in surplus by GBP 16.7 billion in January, the Office for National Statistics reported Wednesday.

This was GBP 9.2 billion larger than in the same period last year and also marked the highest since records began in 1993.

Nonetheless, the surplus for January was lower than the Office for Budget Responsibility forecast of GBP 18.2 billion.

The budget balance usually log surplus in January due to receipts from self assessed taxes.

The ONS said the last time there was not a January surplus was 2021, during the pandemic period.

Central government receipts increased by GBP 3.9 billion to GBP 111.4 billion. Expenditure rose by GBP 1.6 billion to GBP 102.6 billion.

Data showed that borrowing in the financial year-to-January was GBP 96.6 billion, which was GBP 3.1 billion less than in the same ten-month period a year ago.

The OBR had projected a higher GBP 105.8 billion borrowing for the period.

At the end of January, public sector net debt was provisionally estimated at around 96.5 percent of gross domestic product.

Data came ahead of Chancellor Jeremy Hunt's Spring Budget announcement on March 16.

Despite the good news on public finances, this is unlikely to pave the way for a very big pre-election splash, Capital Economics economist Ruth Gregory said.

The Chancellor will be handed "headroom" of just GBP 15 billion, or 0.5 percent of GDP, limiting his ability to unveil big unfunded tax cuts if he wishes to adhere to the fiscal rules, Gregory added.

read more
UK Retail Sales Stable In March

UK Retail Sales Stable In March

UK retail sales were unchanged on a month-on-month basis in March, defying expectations for a gain, preliminary data from the Office for National Statistics showed Friday. Retail sales including automotive fuel grew 0.1 percent in the previous month. Economists were looking for a 0.3 percent gain for March.
RTTNews | 1 day ago
UK Inflation Slows Less Than Forecast

UK Inflation Slows Less Than Forecast

UK consumer price inflation softened less than expected in March but hit the lowest in two-and-a-half years on food prices, adding uncertainty to the timing of the first interest rate cut from the Bank of England. Inflation weakened to 3.2 percent in March from 3.4 percent in February, the Office for National Statistics reported Wednesday.
RTTNews | 3 days ago
UK Unemployment Rate Rises; Wage Growth Slows

UK Unemployment Rate Rises; Wage Growth Slows

The increase in the UK unemployment rate and the marginal slowdown in wage growth in the three months to February suggest an easing of pressure in the labor market. The ILO jobless rate rose to 4.2 percent from 3.9 percent in three months to January, the Office for National Statistics reported Tuesday. The rate was seen at 4.0 percent.
RTTNews | 4 days ago
UK Economy Expands For Second Month

UK Economy Expands For Second Month

The UK economy expanded for the second straight month in February suggesting that it is set to move out of a technical recession, thanks to the rebound in manufacturing output. Real gross domestic product edged up 0.1 percent on a monthly basis in February, the Office for National Statistics said Friday. The growth for January was revised higher to 0.3 percent from 0.2 percent.
RTTNews | 8 days ago
UK House Prices Fall For First Time In 6 Months

UK House Prices Fall For First Time In 6 Months

UK house prices declined for the first time in six months in March, data published by the mortgage lender Halifax showed Friday. House prices dropped 1.0 percent on a monthly basis in March, in contrast to the 0.3 percent rise in February. This was the first decrease since September. Prices were expected to climb 0.3 percent.
RTTNews | 15 days ago
UK Mortgage Approvals Hit 17-Month High

UK Mortgage Approvals Hit 17-Month High

UK mortgage approvals increased more than expected to a 17-month high in February as markets expect interest rate cuts this year. Mortgage approvals for house purchases rose to 60,400 in February from 56,100 in January, the Bank of England reported Tuesday. This was the highest since September 2022 and also exceeded the forecast of 57,000.
RTTNews | 18 days ago
UK House Prices Log Unexpected Fall - Nationwide

UK House Prices Log Unexpected Fall - Nationwide

UK house prices declined unexpectedly in March as higher interest rates continue to damp affordability, data published by the Nationwide Building Society revealed Tuesday. The house price index posted a monthly fall of 0.2 percent in March, in contrast to the 0.7 percent rise in February and confounding the forecast of 0.3 percent gain.
RTTNews | 18 days ago
UK Confirms Q4 Recession

UK Confirms Q4 Recession

Confirming a mild recession in the UK, official data showed that the economy contracted as initially estimated in the fourth quarter. Gross domestic product fell by an unrevised 0.3 percent after a 0.1 percent drop in the third quarter, the Office for National Statistics said Thursday. The UK economy grew only 0.1 percent in 2023, much weaker than the 4.3 percent expansion seen in 2022.
RTTNews | 23 days ago