25 February, 2018
Pope added: "An upwards revision to estimated receipts of corporation tax, PAYE and National Insurance over the first nine months of this financial year have contributed to borrowing being over £2bn lower than thought a month ago".
United Kingdom economic growth was been revised down to 0.4 per cent for the final quarter of 2017 in the second estimate of national income produced by the Office for National Statistics.
"Unemployment remains relatively low by historical standards and there are still 10,000 fewer people unemployed in Scotland than this time a year ago".
"Latest estimates from the Labour Force Survey show that following a period of a continuous decline, the number of unemployed people increased by 46,000 to 1.47 million", the ONS says in a statement.
Household spending remained lacklustre, notching up a 0.3% expansion in the final three months of 2017. Nonetheless, the rate was below consumer price inflation of 3 percent registered in December.
"This is demonstrated by our Budget investments of nearly £2.4bn in enterprise and skills and the most attractive package of non-domestic rates reliefs available anywhere in the United Kingdom, including the Small Business Bonus, worth £720m, and the UK's first nursery relief".
Unemployment rises at sharpest rate for nearly five years
James Smith, an economist at ING Bank, said wage data suggests that the tightness in the labor market is causing firms to lift pay packets to retain staff and hire new talent.
In January, the claimant count rate fell to 2.3 percent from 2.4 percent in December.
Claimant count figures for benefits have also been released, and they reveal that at January 11, the number of claimants in all of Gwent's council areas, except Torfaen, had fallen compared to January past year.
The ONS also reported that business investment was flat in the final quarter of a year ago, despite City expectations of an 0.5 per cent increase.
The rate for people aged 16 and over was five per cent for that period, up 0.9 per cent on the previous quarter (July-September).
Thomas Pope, a research economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, said that the chancellor will be "pleased" with the most recent figures, which enables him to lower the borrowing forecast in this year's Spring Statement next month.
Stormzy, Dua Lipa win big at Brit Awards 2018
The 27-year-old received his trophy from Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood, who called Sheeran "a lovely young guy". Stars performing on the night included Justin Timberlake , Rita Ora, Foo Fighters and Sam Smith.
Struggling Venezuela To Start Selling 'Petro' Cryptocurrency
Although the Venezuelan government has warned that the petro is safe, it has yet to release much details on its workings. Washington has past year levied sanctions, blocking USA banks and investors from acquiring newly issued Venezuelan debt.
Oxfam says staff intimidated witnesses in Haiti sex scandal
The charity formally also apologised to Haiti on Monday over the scandal and for failing to report the matter adequately. He acknowledged that the charity's actions had damaged the whole aid community, as well as the people of Haiti.