“Ministers Sold Student Loans Book Worth £3.5bn For £1.7bn To Cut Public Debt”

Owl says: throwing out the baby, the bathwater AND the bath and then demolishing the bathroom …!

“Ministers who sold off student loans to cut government debt failed to get the best price for the taxpayer and stand accused of being “short-sighted”.

The sale in 2017 of the first tranche of student loans with a face value of £3.5bn raised just £1.7bn – a return of just 48p in the pound, the Public Accounts Committee has found.

The committee’s report says that, according to the Government’s own analysis, had it held on to the loans it would have recouped the £1.7bn sale price in just eight years.

As there was little chance all the loans would be repaid, ministers could not have expected face value but should have sought “the best possible deal”, MPs said.

“In this case, government received too little in return for what it gave up,” the report said.

“Treasury’s focus on reducing its ‘public sector net debt’ measure is a short-sighted approach which fails to convince us that the deal is the best one for public sector finances in the long term.”