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A Panglossian Budget?

John Hawksworth Head of the Macroeconomics Unit PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP provides an economic analysis of the Budget
In Voltaire's Candide the youthful hero is tutored by Master Pangloss an expert in 'metaphysico-theologocosmolonigology' who believes that 'everything is for the best in this best of all possible worlds'. Gordon Brown delivered a distinctly 'Panglossian' Budget on 9 April refusing to countenance the possibility that anything had gone wrong with his carefully crafted fiscal universe. Recent shortfalls in growth and tax revenues were dismissed as temporary blips that will correct themselves automatically as the world economy picks up and the Chancellor argued that his ambitious spending plans could be afforded comfortably with no need for further tax increases. Indeed the Budget even made room for a few small giveaways to...

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