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Public Sector Finances

Read the latest insights on the public finances, including the effect of the coronavirus pandemic on public finances in the UK and around the world. Find out more about tax and other income, public spending, public assets and public liabilities including debt, and what governments can do to develop an effective long-term fiscal strategy to ensure the sustainability of public finances.

Featured items


Election explainers: what is the public balance sheet?

In the run up to the general election politicians and journalists will often talk about the 'public balance sheet', but what is it and what does it mean for people and businesses? ICAEW experts offer this simple guide on the public balance sheet – the government’s assets and liabilities – why they matter and the future outlook.

More retailers issue profit warnings

Sector stress and insolvency is rising, especially in mid-market retail. Pressure on earnings in luxury and semi-durable goods is increasing as disposable income becomes strained, but there is hope on the horizon.


Strategic Finance Network Group

The first face-to-face meeting of the Strategic Finance Network Group tackled the fascinating subject of ‘Influencing Upwards’ at an event hosted by ICAEW at Chartered Accountants Hall.

Reports and analysis

OBR Fiscal risks report 2019

On 18 July 2019, the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) published its second fiscal risks report. The fiscal risks report provides an analysis of the economic and policy risks facing the public finances, including a ‘fiscal stress test’, setting out how the fiscal numbers might react to a no-deal Brexit.

Intergenerational Fairness

This survey provides a unique picture of the views of 10,000 Europeans on intergenerational fairness.

Sustainable Public Finances: Intergenerational Fairness

Ensuring intergenerational fairness is one of the biggest challenges facing European policymakers today. Citizens are increasingly worried that they and their children may end up worse off than previous generations, challenging a key premise that has long underpinned societies: each successive generation would become better off than the one before.

Funding UK Infrastructure

Policy insight examining the view that infrastructure needs to be a central priority for policymakers given the increased economic uncertainty that has emerged following the decision of the British people to leave the EU.