Britain borrowing hit a massive £36 million in September – the THIRD highest month on record

BRITAIN borrowed a massive £36 million in September – the THIRD highest month on record.

Public debt has spiralled to £2 trillion after the Government dished out huge sums of money to keep the country afloat as the country battles a second wave of coronavirus.

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September's shocking figure is £28.4 billion more than the same time last year, which stood at just £7 billion pounds.

The Treasury has had to continue to hand out money to bail out huge parts of the economy and was hit by a double whammy spending crisis as tax revenues plummeted.

Since April, the peak of the first wave of coronavirus, the Exchequer has piled on £208.5 billion of debt, four times the amount for the whole of 2019.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak's furlough scheme has made up a huge chunk of Government spending, estimated by the Office for Budget Responsibility to cost £14billion a month in the height of lockdown.

And the scheme, which will wind up at the end of this month, will be replaced by what has been slammed as a "less generous" offer to help struggling businesses, the Job Support Scheme.

The new Job Support Scheme aims to encourage firms to keep employees on part-time.

Those working at least a third of their normal hours will receive 77 per cent of their salary, capped at £697.92 per month.

The scheme, due to run for six months from November 1, will see the Government pay up to 22 per cent of wages, down from 80 per cent when the furlough policy began.

Responding to the mounting pile of debt Britain is now saddled with, Mr Sunak said: “Whilst it’s clear that the coronavirus pandemic has had a significant impact on our public finances, things would have been far worse had we not acted in the way we did to protect millions of livelihoods.

“I’ve been clear that our enduring priority is to protect as many jobs and businesses as possible through this pandemic, which is the fiscally responsible thing to do.

“Through our comprehensive Plan for Jobs we’re protecting, supporting and creating millions of jobs across the country."

Hinting that there could be tax rises on the horizon for many Brits, Mr Sunak stressed the importance of the restoring the "health" of the public purse.

He said: “Over time and as the economy recovers, the government will take the necessary steps to ensure the long-term health of the public finances.”

Almost £78 billion was spent on day to day costs by the Government last month.

That includes £4.9 billion on the furlough scheme as the Exchequer reduced state contributions and asked employers to foot 10 per cent of the bill, along with national insurance and pension contributions.

And the amount of money coming into Treasury coffers from tax fell by 11.6per cent on last year's figures.

Mr Sunak launched massive tax-saving schemes in the form of rates relief for small businesses and slashing VAT by 15 per cent.

Government debt accounted for a huge 104 per cent of GDP – the highest figure since 1960.

The fresh numbers come as Mr Sunak prepares to give out even more money to help local authorities combat tough Tier 3 restrictions.

Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham shunned Downing Street's offer of £60million yesterday as Boris Johnson was forced to impose measures on the city without the agreement of local leaders.

And South Yorkshire will be plunged into the highest Covid alert level with a financial aid package of £42 million.

 

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