James Forsyth

Not as deep as expected

Not as deep as expected
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The cuts are not as bad as expected because the government has managed to make AME, annually managed expenditure, take much of the strain. The coalition is finding another £7bn from welfare to go with the £10bn of savings announced in the Budget. There is also another £3.5bn coming out of other bits of AME, more than half of which comes from the planned changes to public sector pensions.

The child benefit change is also raising significantly more revenue than originally announced. This is because at the time of the announcement at Tory conference the coalition was planning to end child benefit at 16. This is now not happening.

I also understand that the science budget was protected in cash terms at the last minute using some of the money that the Treasury had held back during the whole spending review process.