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Bank Of England Balance Sheet To Be Released

The Bank of England will tomorrow release its balance sheet for the year ended 31st March 2008 and it should make very interesting reading after the last 12 months. There is already speculation regarding the level of debt owed by Northern Rock with figures expected to show that even in the current environment the groups has increased payments and is now down to around £19 billion. However, most interest will be centred around the £50 billion bail out of the UK bank system earlier this year, and speculation that it may be extended.

Using a number of strictly legal account practices it looks as though the Bank of England has managed to hive the £50 billion bailout fund off balance sheet, prior to the transfer to the Treasury and official government accounts. This will cause many in the City to recalculate Gordon Browns strict borrowing ratios and see how close they have come to being breached.

In the real world, when adding back the Northern Rock loan amount, the £50 billion bank bailout fund would have taken the government over the borrowing threshold which Mr Brown introduced some time ago. However, the world of off-sheet items and accounting practices seems to have come to the rescue of the government for now.

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