Welfare Expenditure

by richardhutton

Given the recent histrionics about unemployment benefits, it seems worthwhile to revisit an infographic from 2012 on how the welfare budget is actually apportioned:

Public spending on Benefits in the UK

(Guardian: note the words ‘click to embiggen’ – a highly cromulent suggestion)

So £159 billion spent on benefits. This breaks down, in order, as follows:

  • £74.22 billion on State Pensions
  • £16.94 billion on Housing Benefit
  • £12.57 billion on disability living allowance
  • £8.11 billion on Pension Credits
  • £6.92 billion on Income Support
  • £5.45 billion on Rent Rebates
  • £5.34 billion on Attendance Allowance
  • £4.94 billion on Incapacity Benefit
  • £4.91 billion on Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • £4.83 billion on Council Tax Benefit
  • £3.58 billion on Employment Support Allowance
  • £2.55 billion on Statuatory Sick and Maternity Pay
  • £2.37 billion on Social Fund Expenditure
  • £1.73 billion on Carer’s Allowance
  • £1.24 billion on Financial Assistance Scheme

The government’s debt interest is £48.2 billion – almost ten times as much as is spent on people unable to secure paid employment.

An average person in Britain earns £20,000 a year. The tax this person pays will provide £142.35 to one unemployed person, in the space of one year. This is the equivalent of two weeks’ Job Seeker’s Allowance. By contrast, they will spend £1,095 on the government – over seven times as much as on JSA – most of this on public debt management.

Isn’t life surprisingly simple sometimes?

(Source: How Your Taxes Are Spent – interactive, set at a salary of £20,210 per annum; tax rate of £8,087).


Update: very informative piece by the Flip Chart Fairy Tales blog which analyses the social security budget/expenditure, contrasting rhetoric with reality.