§ 5. Mr. Kenneth Baker
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is satisfied with the methods of economic and financial forecasting currently used by his Department and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Harold Lever
A continuous effort is made to improve the techniques of forecasting in use at the Treasury and I am satisfied that the best available are in use at the present time.
Would not the hon. Gentleman agree that the Treasury forecasts over the past four years have been as reliable as horoscopes? Could I tempt him to make one more forecast this afternoon and tell the House the date later this year when the Government will introduce their next Budget?
§ Mr. Ian Lloyd
Have the Government paid close attention to the very sceptical analysis of forecasting given in the Stamp Memorial Lecture by no less a person than the Permanent Secretary to the Treasury?