What is the Spring Statement and what will be in it?

A report by the Resolution Foundation today suggests total borrowing will be about £40 billion this year – nearly £10 billion less than the £49.9 billion pencilled in by the Office for Budget Responsibility just four months ago

Chancellor's spring statement to reveal £11bn boost – analysts

Philip Hammond is set to deliver a dose of economic cheer in next week's Spring Statement thanks to sharply lower borrowing forecasts, but there will be no tax giveaways.

The chancellor is expected to begin his brief speech with the United Kingdom on a slightly stronger economic footing from when he delivered his Budget in November.

Philip Hammond is set to launch a consultation on how the tax system might be used to reduce the waste caused by single-use plastics, and will announce funding in the Treasury's Spring statement (Tuesday 13 March) for businesses and universities to develop "new technologies" to help achieve the target of eliminating "avoidable plastic waste" by 2042.

The first one in spring, that usually sums up the state of the United Kingdom economy and its public finances and the second one in autumn, presenting key pillars of next year's Budget.

Why was the Spring Statement and Budget moved?

Albeit two years' late, Britain has now eliminated the deficit on its day-to-day budget, a target set by former chancellor George Osborne at the starting point for United Kingdom public service austerity in 2010.

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However, under the law, the Government's fiscal watchdog, the Office for Budget Responsibility, is mandated to produce two forecasts for borrowing and growth a year, which has meant one in the Spring and one in the Autumn.

What will be in it? Just a response to the new forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility. "The chancellor will publish updated economic forecasts; we expect the speech to last between 15-20 minutes".

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: "The chancellor should not wait until the autumn budget to act".

The November forecast was dismal, with the OBR's downward revision to the UK's productivity outlook alone increased cumulative borrowing by £91bn between 2017-18 and 2021-22, according to the Resolution Foundation.

This is likely to create pressure for the Chancellor to spend some of this windfall on our creaking public services.

But the Resolution Foundation said that since then the United Kingdom had recorded its two strongest quarters of productivity growth in six years, pay was rising at annual rate of 2.9% and the country had a current budget surplus for the first time since 2002.

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These have been previously estimated by the Government as summing to between £35-£39bn in total.

"No other major economy makes hundreds of tax changes twice a year, and neither should we", said the Chancellor when he unveiled the plan.

He said: "Although we still have no idea what post Brexit Britain will look like, the numbers will give the Government a little more ammunition, and give others the feeling that she is not just steering a sinking ship into the abyss".

What is the Spring Statement?

The Treasury says, perhaps ominously, that it "will retain the option to make changes to fiscal policy at the Spring Statement if the economic circumstances require it".

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