British finance minister revises up growth forecasts and predicts a surplus by decade's end

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British finance minister George Osborne painted a brighter economic picture for the U.K. economy, revising up his growth forecasts and even suggesting that the country could be running a budget surplus by the end of the decade

But Osborne cautioned in his Autumn Statement that the public coffers remain strained and that the country will have to wait longer to see the end of austerity. Osborne insists that the government will "fix the roof while the sun is shining" when the budget is expected to be in surplus by 2018-19.

Britain is doing better than most major economies but has more ground to make up following the 2008-9 recession when revised figures show that the U.K. economy shrank by 7.2 percent instead of the previous forecast of 6.3 percent.