By Max Clarke

Data published today by the ONS detail aspects of the public sector’s financial performance, showing large reductions in both borrowing and expenditure; and an overall budget surplus of £8.5 billion for January 2011.

The net cash requirement for the public sector for January 2011, defined as the shortfall between all public sector expenditures and revenues, stood at £60.1 billion: down a staggering £97.4 billion from the £157.4 billion posted for the same month the previous year.

The public sector current budget from April 2010- January 2011, including temporary effects of governmental financial interventions, stood at a £65.7 billion deficit- down £5.1 billion from the same period in 2009/2010’s £71.5 billion.

Net borrowing for the same April-January period was £98.1 billion, down £5.1 billion from the £103.2 billion borrowed in 2009/2010.

By sector, public sector and central government borrowing excluding the temporary skewing effect of financial interventions, for April-January 2010/11 was £113 billion pounds, down £14.1 and £18.3 billion from the previous year.

Total net debt across the public sector was £867.2 billion, or 57% of the UK GDP.