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Spending Review: Osborne's '£27bn windfall may never arrive'

The Chancellor's anticipated £27 billion windfall that allowed him to balance his Autumn Statement and Spending Review may never arrive, a group of experts have warned.

George Osborne used the proceeds of a surprise improvement in forecast tax receipts and low debt-interest rates to protect police budgets and bankroll a U-turn over tax credit cuts.

But independent economic think tank the Institute of Fiscal Studies, ahead of detailed analysis to be released today, warned that there was only a "50-50" chance of the revenue forecasts remaining as positive for Mr Osborne. Speaking to the BBC, director Paul Johnson said:

The risk for him, and this must be at least a 50-50 risk, is that the next time round, or the time after, or the time after, these tax revenue forecasts will look less rosy.

– Paul Johnson, Institute of Fiscal Studies


Weather: Rain and drizzle in western areas, brighter in east

Top temperatures will be 12 or 13 Celsius. Credit: ITV Weather

Outbreaks of rain and drizzle will affect western parts on Thursday, with the heaviest bursts towards the northwest where we could see coastal gales at times.

Central and eastern areas will have a dry but mainly cloudy day, with the best of the brightness over towards eastern coasts.

Top temperatures will be 12 or 13 Celsius (54 or 55 F).


Obama 'deeply disturbed' by Laquan McDonald footage

Barack Obama is from Chicago, where the shooting happened. Credit: PA

Barack Obama has said he was "deeply disturbed" by the footage of the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald.

On Tuesday, police released the footage which shows the black teenager being shot 16 times by white officer Jason Van Dyke on October 20, 2014.

The US President, who is from Chicago where the shooting occurred, wrote on Facebook: "Like many Americans, I was deeply disturbed by the footage of the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald.

"This Thanksgiving, I ask everybody to keep those who’ve suffered tragic loss in our thoughts and prayers, and to be thankful for the overwhelming majority of men and women in uniform who protect our communities with honor.

"And I’m personally grateful to the people of my hometown for keeping protests peaceful."

Council tax surcharge could raise £2bn for social care

Under the Spending Review, councils now have the power to collect a 2% surcharge to put towards the cost of adult social care.

The Chancellor George Osborne says this could raise up to £2 billion but those in the care industry say that is not enough to keep them in business.

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