Reality check on benefits and fraud

3 Nov

Sorry this is a rant brought on by my ever-increasing fury as people ‘buy’ totally a destructive, bitter rhetoric on who is to blame for the state of our economy. So the graph below shows where the welfare spend goes in billions…OMG check it out! A very small proportion goes on unemployment benefits…tiny. So are you going to change your tune to scrounging pensioners? No because a) they vote and b) they, er, paid their taxes.

SO about £8bn was spent per year under the previous government per year on unemployment. £87bn paid to bail out the banks.

And fraud, those ripping the rest of us off? How big a problem is this, according to the Government’s own figures:

The latest National Statistics report, Fraud and Error in the Benefit System: Preliminary 2011/12 Estimates (Revised Edition) was released on 6 June 2012 according to the arrangements approved by the UK Statistics Authority. This report is produced by the Department for Work and Pensions.

The latest report estimates fraud and error levels in the benefit system in Great Britain.

  • For 2011/12 (preliminary), it is estimated that 2.0 per cent of total benefit expenditure was overpaid due to fraud and error. This is down from the 2010/11 level of 2.1 per cent.
  • The estimated value of overpayments is £3.2bn, which is the same as the 2010/11 estimated value.
  • For 2011/12 (preliminary), it is estimated that 0.8 per cent of total benefit expenditure was underpaid due to fraud and error, the same as the 2010/11 estimate.
  • The estimated value of underpayments is £1.3bn, which is a rise from the 2010/11 value of £1.2bn.

Oh man, this ruins the whole story – in fact underpayments against overpayments means the total spend there is about £2bn lost this way? Reminder – bank bail outs was £87bn.

 

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