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£18 billion income for the higher education sector

The higher education sector had a total income of £18.0 billion in the 2004/05 academic year compared to £16.9 billion in 2003/04.

In contrast, higher education institutions reported an expenditure of £17.8 billion in 2004/05 up from £16.7 billion in 2003/04. The surplus (see note 1) of income over expenditure decreased from £237 million in 2003/04 to £213 million in 2004/05.

When analysing sources of income in more detail, grants from funding councils contributed the largest proportion of income at £7.0 billion. This marks a rise of 6.8 per cent on the £6.5 billion from funding council grants in 2003/04. Endowment and investment income saw the largest year-on-year increase, 23.9 per cent, up from £242 million in 2003/04 to £299 million in 2004/05.

Sources of income 2003/04 and 2004/05 (£thousands)
  2003/04 2004/05   % change
Funding Council grants 6522935 6967346 6.8
Tuition fees & education grants & contracts   4094019 4335652 5.9
Research grants & contracts 2724924 2883900 5.8
Other income 3312624 3506749 5.9
Endowment & investment income 241709 299515 23.9
Total income 16896211    17993162 6.5

Income from “other” sources rose by 5.9 per cent to £3.5 billion. Examples of income sources included in this category are grants from local authorites and income from intellectual property rights.

Expenditure rose by £1.1 billion or 6.7 per cent. This rise is fairly even across the various types of expenditure as shown by the table below, with the exception of depreciation costs which showed an increase of 9.8 per cent.

Expenditure by type 2003/04 and 2004/05 (£thousands)
  2003/04 2004/05   % change
Staff costs 9749960 10377331 6.4
Other operating expenses   5915044 6317040 6.8
Depreciation 792784 870393 9.8
Interest payable 201308 214916 6.8
Total expenditure 16659096    17779680 6.7

The data is released in HESA’s annual CD-ROM product, HE Finance Plus 2004/05.

Notes to editors

Please credit any use of this material to HESA’s HE Finance Plus 2004/05.

Press enquiries should be directed to:

HE Finance Plus 2004/05 is an annual CD-ROM published by HESA. It is available to the public from HESA Customer Services, telephone 01242 211155 or visit our products page for more information. The HESA reference volume Resources of Higher Education Institutions 2004/05, due to be published in May, also contains data on HE finances as well as detailed data on HE staff.

Where comparisons are made between the latest financial year (2004/05) and the previous year (2003/04), the previous year’s figures are those reported in the re-stated financial statements.

This data relates to all UK institutions. Figures for the individual nations of the UK are available on request.

  1. The deficit/surplus is on continuing operations after depreciation of fixed assets at valuation and before exceptional items, tax and minority interest.


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