Date Published 15 March 2018
The UK economy continues to grow, continues to create jobs and continues to beat expectations
The economy has grown for the last five consecutive years, and has exceeded expectations since the 2017 forecast.
The OBR (office for budget responsibility) has increased their forecast for growth this year, and manufacturing has had the longest period of expansion in 50 years.
Employment has increased by 3 million since 2010, which is the equivalent of 1,000 people finding work every day. The unemployment rate is close to a 40-year low. There is also a joint record number of women in work – 15.1 million. The OBR predict there will be over 500,000 more people in work by 2022.
The OBR expect inflation to fall over the next 12 months, and wages to rise faster than prices over the next five years.
In the Autumn Budget of 2017, the government announced an investment programme of £44bn over the next 5 years to supply 300,000 homes a year on average by the mid-2020s.
The Spring Statement 2018 confirmed that this was well underway.
To help people getting onto the housing ladder, stamp duty for first-time buyers of homes under £300,000 was abolished at Autumn Budget 2017, with buyers of properties up to £500,000 benefitting from the change. An estimated 60,000 first-time buyers have benefitted so far.