12 billion flying pigs

Flip Chart Fairy Tales

A couple of reports on welfare social security spending came out either side of Christmas.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies noted that, while spending is forecast to fall as a percentage of GDP, it is still set to rise in real terms during the next parliament. Even with a growing economy, benefits will still be a larger proportion of GDP at the end of the decade than they were before the recession.

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More than half of the benefit spending goes to pensioners:

Total spending on benefits, tax credits and state pension in 2015–16 is forecast to be £220 billion, equivalent to 29.5% of overall government spending, and 11.6% of GDP.

Of this total, around £121 billion is forecast to be paid to pensioners: they will receive £92 billion in state pensions, and around £29 billion in other benefits such as pension credit, housing benefit and disability benefits. The remaining £99 billion of expenditure…

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