British state borrowing hits record April peak: official
The British government's borrowing ballooned in April to a record amount for the month on the back of lower taxation receipts and rising interest costs, official data showed on Tuesday.
Public sector net borrowing hit £10 billion (11.5 billion euros, $16.1 billion) in April, the first month of the 2011/2012 financial year, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said in a statement.
That overshot market expectations for £6.5 billion, according to analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires, and compared with net borrowing of £7.3 billion in April 2010.
An ONS official said that last year's tax take was boosted by the British government's levy on bank bonuses. The one-off measure had lifted state coffers by £3.5 billion in April last year.
Added to the mix, the interest that the government pays on its debt rose to £4.6 billion last month. That compared with £3.6 billion last time around.
"April's UK public finance figures get the new fiscal year off to a bad start," said economist Samuel Tombs at the Capital Economics consultancy.
However, in a further twist, the ONS also downgraded March 2011 borrowing to £17.9 billion, compared with the £18.6 billion given last month.
As a result, in the 2010/2011 fiscal year, the public sector borrowed £139.3 billion, it added on Tuesday.
That is less than the £145.9 billion given last month, and even further underneath the £145.9 billion forecast from the Office for Budget Responsibility in March.
© 2011 AFP