Rishi Sunak is warning that a one percentage point increase in the interest rates paid on government debt could add £25bn to the annual debt interest bill. Does this stack up? And how worried should we be? For a start, the £25bn figure is factually correct. There has been some confusion about this on Twitter, … Continue reading Sense checking the Chancellor’s £25bn
The centrepiece of Keir Starmer’s big policy speech on Thursday was a proposal for a new ‘British Recovery Bond’. It’s a nice idea on paper and many other people, from both left and right, have backed similar schemes. But it’s still hard to see what it would actually achieve in practice. To recap, the plan … Continue reading What’s the point of ‘British Recovery Bonds’?
I’ve read some utter tosh on the state of the UK public finances in the last few days. Here is an attempt to correct some of the biggest misunderstandings. Most importantly, government debt does not have to be ‘repaid’, only serviced. As long as the government can meet the interest payments (I’ll come back to … Continue reading How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Debt