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|Budget reaction from Benson Hersch, Association of Short Term Lenders - on the OBR forecast and debt|
|Thursday, 09 March 2017|
Benson Hersch, CEO at the Association of Short Term Lenders, says “The biggest risk the UK faces is the level of both personal and government borrowing. It is this that jeopardises both the level of housing investment and our ability to withstand any shocks that the Brexit process may bring. Only a few years ago the previous Chancellor said government borrowing would peak at what sounded like the horrendous amount of 80% of GDP; in the budget today Philip Hammond declared that will now reach 88% of GDP in the 2018/19 financial year. Each year we spend £50billion on debt interest. That's more than on defence or foreign aid.
“While the modification to the rise in business rates is welcome, the level of personal debt also continues to climb. Borrowers are therefore increasingly vulnerable to the threat of interest rate rises that will inevitably come to counter the predicted rise in inflation to 2.4% this year, a level of inflation that may yet prove to be conservative following a renewed drop in the value of the pound.”
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