Budget will hold no big surprises on spending or tax, chancellor says

Philip Hammond denies big changes in spring budget as UK economy continues to perform strongly. But what does that mean for public finances?

Philip Hammond has played down the significance of the spring budget and denied he plans to surprise parliament with big spending plans or tax reforms.

This was always going to be a “just in case” budget, only bursting into life should the public finances need rescuing from a further slowdown in the economy. But the economy is performing strongly, even as it slows, leaving the chancellor to continue where he left off in the autumn statement: focusing on relatively limited measures to improve the UK’s infrastructure, skills and education.

Related: Six key charts you need to make sense of the budget

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