A quirky and hazardous corner of British public finance – FT.com

Over the past 18 months a bizarre two-way traffic has emerged in UK local government finance. While local authorities are furiously selling assets to plug gaps in their budgets resulting from central government funding cuts, they have simultaneously been accumulating property assets across the country. Such has been the buying spree that they are now a significant force in the commercial property market. This is largely thanks to cheap finance provided by an arm of the UK Treasury.

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