March statement

Treasury sets date for Hunt’s spring Budget

Jeremy Hunt
Spring in his step: Jeremy Hunt

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt will deliver the spring Budget on 15 March by which time he will be hoping inflation will have peaked and the recession will not be taking too big of a toll on the economy.

The statement will be accompanied by an assessment from the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) of the impact of the government’s tax and spending plans on the public finances.

Mr Hunt last month delivered what was effectively a budget in all but name in which he cut spending and raised taxes by £55bn.

It was designed to reassure the markets that the government had a grip on the public finances following the disastrous September mini-budget.

The pound slumped to a record low against the US dollar, UK gilt yields – which move inversely to prices – notched their biggest gain in more than two decades and the Bank of England was forced to launch an emergency up to £65bn bond buying programme to stem market volatility. More support for home buyers is thought to be imminent.

Mr Hunt tore up almost the entire mini-budget presented by his predecessor Kwasi Kwarteng, and said “tough decisions” will be required to get the economy back on track for significant growth.

In a statement today, he said: “Today I can inform the House that I have asked the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) to prepare a forecast for 15 March 2023 to accompany a Spring Budget.

“This forecast, in addition to the forecast that took place in November 2022, will fulfil the obligation for the OBR to produce at least two forecasts in a financial year, as is required by legislation.”

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