Covid bulletin #65: Autumn Budget Announced

Oct 28, 2021 | Sector & policy

This is the 65 of a series of bulletins produced by ISE to update members on key data and policy relating to Covid-19. This bulletin covers the period 15 October – 28 October 2021.

You can access all of the Covid-19 bulletins on ISE insights.


Latest COVID-19 data and news

Source: Government Covid-19 dashboard

Please note – October figures in the top graph only currently include data until 22/10/21 for hospital admissions and 26/10/21 for cases and deaths. In addition, the average daily hospital admission rate for the most recent week in the second graph is based on data from 18/10/21 – 22/10/21..

The UK has now had almost 8.9m identified Covid-19 cases and 163,515 deaths (with Covid on the death certificate) in total. A steady increase in cases and hospitalisations can be observed over the last 6 weeks. There is not as apparent a trend for deaths, however figures in the most recent week had returned to the higher levels of late September following a few weeks of decreased rates.

Source: Government Covid-19 dashboard

79.3% of the 12+ UK population are now fully vaccinated against Covid-19, with another 7.2% having had one dose. 13.5% remain unvaccinated. 6.4m ‘booster’ third doses have also been given.





Rishi Sunak delivered the Autumn Budget on 27 October. Some key points relating to the economy, education and employment were:

  • Office for Budget Responsibility forecasts 4% inflation for next year.
  • The economy is expected to grow by 6.5% this year, but won’t return to pre-pandemic levels until early 2022.
  • Unemployment expected to peak at 5.2%, down from last year’s forecasts of 12%.
  • Borrowing in the current financial year will be 7.9% of GDP, falling to 3.3% next year.
  • Departmental spending to increase by £
  • National living wage will increase from £91 to £9.50 an hour from April
  • Schools funding to increase by £1500 per pupil, returning to 2010 levels.
  • 30,000 special school places to be created.
  • Almost £5bn allocated to catch up funding following the disruption to education during the pandemic.
  • Spending on skills and training increased by £8bn.
  • UK-wide numeracy service, Multiply, to be launched.

Experts have reacted to these announcements and explain the potential impacts.

The Office for Budget Responsibility published their October Economic and Fiscal Outlook here.


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