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UK borrowing surged to GBP20.514 billion in August, far exceeding analysts' forecasts of a jump to GBP15.6 billion as rising inflation lifted government borrowing costs. Debt interest payments rose to GBP6.3 billion, the highest August on record, from an upwardly-revised GBP3.7 billion in July, as RPI rose by 0.6 percentage points between May and June. That's less than the record-high GBP8.7 billion paid out in June, but interest payments will continue to lift borrowing in the months to come, as inflation continues to rise.
VAT receipts rose by 5.0% in the year to August, below the upwardly-revised 18.6% surge in July, leaving VAT 5.6% below August 2019 levels. VAT may have been depressed by the relaxation of levies on eating out through the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme. July borrowing was revised sharply downward to GBP6.940 billion from the initially-reported GBP10.33 Bln.
The overall debt-to-GDP level stood at 97.6%, revised lower as overall borrowing levels were revised lower and growth continues to recover.
UK debt-to-GDP levels