IFS: Budget was “regressive”

George Osborne claimed it was a "progressive Budget". Analysis by the independent IFS shows that, stripping away pre-announced measures, it was a "regressive Budget".

Stripping away pre-announced measures, the Budget was regressive

A picture says a thousand words. The respected, independent Institute for Fiscal Studies today said clearly that , “likely … overall impact of yesterday’s measures was regressive”.

By 2014-15, the distributional impact of tax and benefit measures is only “progressive” if the pre-announced decisions made by Labour – including the 50p income tax rate – are included. The IFS are clear that the Treasury’s claims only hold valid, “because of reforms announced by the previous government”. Stripping them out means that George Osborne’s dictum is wrong.

This analysis – consistent with Left Foot Forward’s own yesterday, the Financial Times’ and Nick Pearce on Open Democracy – could not be clearer: taken on its own, it was a regressive Budget.