Discussion of the UK Government
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#276384
Another big corporation tax cut. Gid punishes the likes of Amazon, Starbucks and Google for their flagrant tax avoidance... by giving them a juicy tax cut. Just fucking stupendous. Got to laugh at Osborne and journos treating OBR forecasts as if they have some sort of relevance. The OBR is fucking hopeless.

Also, shares for rights is going ahead even though employers also think it's a spectacularly shit idea. Just another example of the Lib Dems keeping the Tories on a tight leash. No mansion tax either. Thanks Vince.
By visage
Membership Days Posts
#276387
new puritan wrote:I'm not watching it but it's worth bearing in mind that Balls has quite a bad speech impediment. It seems to be worse on some days than others.
Didnt know that - he's always come across as normal in that regard. He does seem to be tripping over his words more often than usual.
#276389
Fuck me, Balls quoting Dorries 'two posh boys...' before the killer blow - "He's the chancellor can't someone get him out of here?" Just livening up before the Beeb switch coverage to Parliament channel.
#276411
Yet another sleight of hand from Osborne.
Against expectations, George Osborne announced in his Autumn Statement that borrowing would fall, not rise, this year. The news cheered the Conservative backbenches and clearly threw Ed Balls, who was jeered by Osborne and David Cameron as he mistakenly said the deficit was "not rising" (he meant to say it was rising). Borrowing so far this year is £5bn (7.4 per cent) higher than in the same period last year - it seemed there was no way out for the Chancellor.

So how did he do it? Well, turn to p. 12 of the Office for Budget Responsibility document and it becomes clear that Osborne has performed an accounting trick worthy of Enron. First, he added the expected £3.5bn receipts from the 4G mobile spectrum auction - even though it's yet to take place. Second, he included the interest transferred to the Treasury from the Bank of England's Quantitative Easing programme (worth £11.5bn), despite the Institute for Fiscal Studies warning him that it would call into doubt his credibility. Were it not for these two measures, borrowing would be £15bn higher than stated by Osborne. If we add that £15bn to the £108bn figure provided by the OBR, then total forecast borrowing for this year becomes £123bn, £1.4bn higher than last year. Little wonder that the Chancellor was so keen to bag the 4G receipts early.

But while these fiscal somersaults might allow Osborne to claim he's reduced borrowing, what reputation he had for statistical transparency has been destroyed. In his speech to the Commons, the Chancellor boasted that "it is a measure of the constitutional achievement that it is taken for granted that our country’s forecast is now produced independently of the Treasury". That claims looks very questionable today.
http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/20 ... ng-figures" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
#276417
Interestingly, that Treasury projection above - which shows the top decile being hit fractionally harder than the lowest - appears to include the £5bn Osborne says is going to be raised through a crackdown on Swiss tax dodging. Unfortunately for him and us, the OBR now appears to be saying that this estimate may turn out to be, er, bollocks.
Laura Kuenssberg
‏@ITVLauraK
Chote says it is 'very difficult' and 'uncertain' to know how much cash govt will get from Swiss tax crackdown
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Faisal Islam
‏@faisalislam
Chote confirms to me that theres a risk Swiss bank tax deal will fall at a referendum... That's £5bn. #AS2012
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By smod
Membership Days Posts
#276421
So how did he do it? Well, turn to p. 12 of the Office for Budget Responsibility document and it becomes clear that Osborne has performed an accounting trick worthy of Enron. First, he added the expected £3.5bn receipts from the 4G mobile spectrum auction - even though it's yet to take place. Second, he included the interest transferred to the Treasury from the Bank of England's Quantitative Easing programme (worth £11.5bn), despite the Institute for Fiscal Studies warning him that it would call into doubt his credibility. Were it not for these two measures, borrowing would be £15bn higher than stated by Osborne. If we add that £15bn to the £108bn figure provided by the OBR, then total forecast borrowing for this year becomes £123bn, £1.4bn higher than last year. Little wonder that the Chancellor was so keen to bag the 4G receipts early.
http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/20 ... ng-figures" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

What a cunt.
#276426
I suppose the proceeds of the phone auctions is fair enough to include, if not a sign of Osborne's brilliance. The quantative easing money though is a disgrace. Robert Chote seemed like a decent bloke when he was at the IFS. He needs to get out of the OBR soon.

It's not just the OBR who've been very generous to the government in allowing this stroke. The Bank of England doesn't look very independent.

See here:

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/2dba8ab0-2da3 ... z2E7x656Vw" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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