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Key Financial Indicators (KFI)

HE Provider Data: Finance Key Financial Indicators

KFIs are a set of ratio calculations based on data from the Finance record.

HESA has collected and published financial statements data and associated analysis for the UK HE sector for over twenty years. During this time, HE financial data was relatively homogeneous in many respects, with financial years naturally following the pattern of the academic year. Changes to the regulation of HE in England have seen a broadening and diversification of HE provider types, and consequently a re-evaluation of appropriate collection and publication strategies.

From 2018/19 the Office for Students (OfS) has been collecting financial data from HE providers in England, including alternative providers (APs) for the first time. Note that the OfS do not collect data from further education colleges and sixth form colleges under the primary regulation of the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA). The data collected by the OfS has been ingested by HESA and integrated with the data for HE providers in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. All tables contain a filter to allow for analysis by month of financial year end.

Providers for 2015/16 and 2016/17 academic years are all reported assuming a financial year end date of 31 July. As such, these dates will not appear in the tables.

As a result of this adjustment, additional KFIs have been introduced to report the impact of this adjustment.

KFIs are not performance indicators and take no account of higher education provider characteristics such as the range of subjects taught or the types of provision.

For descriptions of each indicator see: Key Financial Indicator (KFI) definitions.

Some HE providers saw significant cost adjustments in both 2018/19 and 2019/20, relating to the accounting treatment for the value of pension schemes.  This appears as a significant additional cost in 2018/19, which caused some providers to report deficits, and an opposite movement in 2019/20, which caused some providers to show unusually large surpluses.  This additional cost is an accounting, non-cash, adjustment. It is not a typical annual operating expense/credit for these providers and therefore caution is advised in any interpretation of financial operating performance in 2018/19 and 2019/20. For this reason, additional versions of relevant KFIs with pension cost adjustments applied have been published to enable users to understand the impact of this accounting change.

Note: Table 14 was updated on 26 August 2021. This was to correct some minor rounding errors in the 2018/19 and 2019/20 data that were found in the version of the table published on 24 August 2021 and to ensure suppressions had been applied correctly.

Table 14 - Key Financial Indicators

Academic years 2015/16 to 2019/20

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