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Government Spending Highest Since WWII - Perthshire Chamber of Commerce

Government Spending Highest Since WWII

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The cost of measures to support the economy during the coronavirus pandemic has pushed government borrowing to the highest level since the end of World War Two.

Government borrowing - the difference between spending and tax income - hit £303.1bn in the year to March, the Office for National Statistics said.

Compared to the previous year, borrowing is nearly £250bn higher. Borrowing hit £28bn in March alone - a record high for that month.

Measures to support individuals and businesses during the pandemic contributed to a £203.2bn, or 27.5%, increase in central government day-to-day spending in the year to March, the ONS said.

Meanwhile, tax and National Insurance receipts fell by £34.9bn, down 5% compared to the previous 12 months.

The ONS also said public borrowing as a percentage of GDP, or national output rose, to 14.5% - also the highest since the end of the second world war when it reached 15.2% in 1946.

The huge borrowing levels over the past year has now pushed public sector net debt up to £2.142 trillion, which is 97.7% of GDP - a rate not seen since the early 1960s.


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