by Martin Odoni
Did anyone else notice this little announcement from George Osborne on the 8th of January? He was essentially endorsing a previous remark from Michael Gove, the Chief Drip… er, Whip, about how, by 2020, there should be a budget surplus in the public finances of about £23 billion. The hope appears to be that about £7 billion of this putative surplus could be used for a fresh round of tax cuts at the end of the next Parliament.
Now, the chances of this surplus really being there in five years’ time are extremely low, as it depends on there being no corresponding slowdown in the economy as a result of the spending cuts required (supposedly) to wipe out the deficit. If such a…
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