Category: Politics

Is there any money left?

In 2010, Liam Byrne left a note to his successor as Chief Secretary to the Treasury which famously read “I’m afraid there is no money”. After all, annual borrowing had just peaked at a record £158 billion, and the stock of debt was about to top £1,000 billion for the first time. Roll forward a little over a … Continue reading Is there any money left?

Two cheers and one boo for the Budget

On balance, I think Rishi Sunak got more things right than wrong in Wednesday’s Budget. Let’s start with a couple of positives. First, he extended the most important support measures, including the uplift to Universal Credit and the furlough scheme, until the end of September. This is probably longer than strictly necessary because the remaining … Continue reading Two cheers and one boo for the Budget

Is there any case for tax increases now?

Few people outside the Treasury think that now is a good time even to be talking about raising taxes, let alone actually doing so. Nonetheless, it seems almost certain that the Chancellor will start down this road in Wednesday’s Budget. This may not be as mad as it sounds. The arguments against immediate tax hikes … Continue reading Is there any case for tax increases now?