Local government paid back or lent £4.1bn in the second quarter this year, leaving the sector’s ‘current account’ in the black for that period, according to official statistics.
The sector paid back £3.9bn in last year’s second quarter, leaving it £200m up on the same period in 2008, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
An ONS spokesman said it was common for local government to be in surplus in the second quarter, because the end of the financial year, in April, brings gains such as tax receipts, among others.
The public sector current budget in July 2009 was in deficit by £5.1bn, this is a £13bn higher deficit than in July 2008, when there was a surplus of £7.8bn.
Overall public sector net debt stood at £800.8bn, equivalent to 56.8% of gross domestic product, in July, the bulletin said.