This release presents updated estimates of key public spending outturn series against two frameworks. The budgeting framework (used in Tables 1 to 8) deals with spending within central government departmental budgets, which is how the government plans and controls public spending. This budgeting framework is largely based on resource accounting principles.
The second framework is the expenditure on services framework (used in Tables 9 and 10), which broadly follows National Accounts definitions. This framework is used for statistical analyses in these outturn updates as well as in the annual Public Expenditure Statistical Analysis (PESA) publication. Expenditure on services covers current and capital expenditure by the whole of the public sector to deliver services.
This National Statistics release contains an update of 2009-10 outturn data, as well as a new more detailed presentation of the accounting adjustments table. This new presentation increases the transparency of our spending data. The main changes are to show in more detail items removed from departmental budgeting data, and inclusion of a breakdown of ONS adjustments by economic category. For this release we have included both the new and the old versions of the table to enable side by side comparison. In future only the new version will be included in PESA releases. We would welcome feedback on the new presentation of the accounting adjustments.
The underlying data is the same for both versions of the table. Entries in the old version of the accounting adjustments table are documented in Annex D of the PESA 2010 command paper. We will be updating this annex in PESA 2011 to reflect the new presentation of the accounting adjustments.
There are updates to the outturn for 2009-10. There are no significant revisions to 2008-09 backwards.
These data are being released in accordance with the UK Statistics Authority Code of Practice for Official Statistics.
Public expenditure by budgeting category (Tables 1 to 8)
Presentation of public expenditure in Tables 1 to 7 follows the Treasury’s budgeting and control framework for 2010-11, which splits spending into resource and capital budgets. These budgets are further split into Departmental Expenditure Limits (DEL) and Annually Managed Expenditure (AME). DELs are firm three-year spending limits set for departments. Spending that cannot reasonably be subject to firm multi-year limits is included in AME, alongside most other non-cash transactions.
DEL and AME (including accounting adjustments) together make up Total Managed Expenditure (TME), an aggregate that is drawn from the National Accounts and is defined (in National Accounts terms) as public sector current expenditure plus public sector net investment plus public sector depreciation. Further details about the budgeting framework are contained in Annex C of PESA.
Public expenditure on services (Tables 9 to 10)
The expenditure on services framework broadly represents the current and capital spending of the public sector, so is similar to Total Managed Expenditure (TME). The main divergence is where certain transactions that score within TME cannot be allocated to functions on a consistent basis, so are excluded from the expenditure on services framework (e.g. depreciation). Further information about the expenditure on services framework is contained in Annex E of PESA. The allocation of spending to function is generally consistent with the UN Classification Of the Functions Of Government (COFOG).
Key differences between the two spending frameworks
There are three key differences between the budgeting and expenditure on services frameworks. These are:
- the budgeting framework is based on resource accounting principles so includes non-cash items that are then removed in the accounting adjustments to get to TME. The expenditure on services framework essentially just includes those items that are classified as part of TME
- the budgeting framework includes all central government (CG) spending so it shows CG support to the local government (LG) and public corporation (PC) sectors, plus the self-financed spending of these sectors. The expenditure on services framework excludes CG support to other sectors - it then includes total LG and PC spending. This differing treatment is reflected in the economic category tables
- the budgeting framework is used by the government to plan and control spending. The expenditure on services framework is designed for statistical analyses of spending, particularly for functional and country/regional analyses
Sources and methodology
Treasury public spending statistics are compiled from accounting data. Central government spending is reported by Whitehall departments and the devolved administrations. DWP supplies data on local government social protection spending. DfE supplies data on local government education spending in England. All other local government spending data are supplied by CLG and the Devolved Administrations. The spending aggregate, TME, was supplied by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and is consistent with the joint ONS/HMT Public Sector Finance Statistics release of 25 January 2010.
Data in this release are largely sourced from the internal accounting systems of Whitehall departments and devolved administrations. Where Resource Accounts for 2009-10 have been finalised, the data reported on the Treasury’s spending database will be consistent with this. Data for the larger departments are formally signed off by Finance Directors when they are supplied.
Within the Treasury, data are initially validated by department-facing spending teams, prior to more rigorous validation by Treasury statisticians. For this release, this has included a detailed analysis of those transactions that have a revised treatment under the new budgeting framework.
Revisions policy for these public expenditure outturn updates
As announced in press notice PN/15/10, these National Statistics releases have been de-coupled from the timing of policy events, so that they can be released on a more timely basis. The proposed new release dates, and the main data updates that they will include, are as follows:
- July - provisional outturn for central government (Whitehall) departments
- October - final outturn for central government (Whitehall) departments and provisional outturn for local government
- February (this release) - final outturn for local government and Devolved Administrations
- April - updated Country and Regional Analysis (CRA) figures (the main PESA release)
The Treasury National Statistics release calendar and the UK Statistics Authority release hub have been updated to reflect this new schedule.
Accessibility of the underlying datasets
The data in the tables in this release are supplemented by links to historical functional series and to interactive data sets published in excel, which are available on the Treasury website. Interactive datasets have previously only been made available alongside the main PESA release, but budgeting and expenditure on services datasets (the two datasets underlying the two frameworks in this release) will now additionally be made available alongside in-year updates. The Country and Regional Analysis interactive datasets will continue to be made available annually.
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