By David Milliken
LONDON (Reuters) – British public borrowing rose to 35.920 billion pounds ($45.8 billion) in August, a record high for the month though below its peaks earlier in the financial year, as the government dealt with the economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic.
July’s public borrowing figure was revised down by more than 11 billion pounds. But borrowing for the first five months of the financial year still rose further to its highest on record at 173.7 billion pounds, overtaking the annual total at the peak of the financial crisis.
The most recent forecast from Britain’s Office for Budget Responsibility estimates borrowing for the full financial year will be a record 372 billion pounds, equivalent to 18.9% of gross domestic product, a ratio not seen since World War Two.
Public sector net debt in August reached 2.024 trillion pounds or 101.9% of GDP, the highest as a share of the economy since the 1960-61 financial year.
Britain suffered the biggest economic hit of any G7 economy from the coronavirus during the second quarter of this year, with output collapsing by 20%, and the Bank of England estimates third-quarter output will be around 7% below pre-crisis levels.
Finance minister Rishi Sunak announced plans on Thursday that mean future support for furloughed workers will be much less generous, though he said the focus for now should be on restoring growth rather than the long-term public finances.
The British government’s borrowing costs on financial markets are near record lows, due to global gloom about the economic outlook and a long-term fall in interest rates.
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.
Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Send your news and stories to us firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com and WhatsApp: +447747873668.
Before you go...
Democratic norms are being stress-tested all over the world, and the past few years have thrown up all kinds of questions we didn't know needed clarifying – how long is too long for a parliamentary prorogation? How far should politicians be allowed to intervene in court cases? To monitor these issues as closely as we have in the past we need your support, so please consider donating to The Climax News Room.