He went so far as to specify that the impact would be £2000 per household lost as a result. How much credence should we give this figure?
Based on the evidence outlined in HM Treasury's paper - not much. Some attempts to model the impact of independence on Scottish trading with the UK were based on academic research that applies to very old and/or different circumstances (e.g., Ireland in 1922 or Czechoslovakia breaking up after the dissolution of the old Soviet Empire).
Other analysis compared the internal and external trading pattern of countries such as Canada and the USA. However, such relationships have evolved over centuries and, in more recent times, have been declining in terms of trade barriers.
None of these examples comes close to what is envisaged here, that is, a "soft" dissolution of the UK's political union, where economic ties remain strong (e.g. using a shared currency) and where there is a common language, deep-rooted historical ties and common membership of the EU single market, with all the mutual legal obligations against trade barriers that entails.
To suggest that, despite this, there would be a drop of more than 80% in the share of trade going to the rest of the UK, post independence, is fanciful. There may be a drop in terms of the share of exports going to the UK, but this is likely to come about as a result of a widening of horizons by exporters, especially as emerging economies, such as China, continue to present the best options for export growth.
There is a useful piece of work to be done on the trading implications, positive and negative, of prospective independence. This isn't it.
Where the Treasury report was on more solid ground was in its analysis of the scale of the economic benefits accruing to Scotland from the North Sea. They rightly dismiss the £1.5 trillion figure regularly trotted out as the "worth" of oil and gas reserves still in the North Sea. This is a notional figure that excludes any associated costs of recovering the oil as well as the fact most of the final profits end up overseas, with the tax revenues being the principal element that remains within Scotland. The real thorny issue in relation to North Sea oil is how do you build an Oil Fund, which is a good idea, while plugging the funding gap that emerges when Scotland no longer receives its higher-than-population share of UK public expenditure?
A very high oil price would be one way, but no government can guarantee this, and so far, no-one has come up with a satisfactory alternative.
One other highlight of the paper was the largely overlooked finding that Scotland had experienced a slightly higher growth rate in its standard of living than was seen in the UK over the long run (1963 to 2012). This may come as a surprise to many but it has been well rehearsed by CPPR and others over the years. It is the product of a slower GDP growth rate in Scotland but an even slower increase in the population, which means income per inhabitant has grown faster on average in Scotland. However, political parties in Scotland seem uncertain over how to react to this information.
OSBORNE's team presented just part of the picture as they only measure the onshore part of the Scottish economy. The North Sea is a crucial element in the independence debate and it would make sense to compare what Scotland's past and future growth would look like taking the North Sea into account. However, this is tricky as standard economic measures become less useful when assessing the impact of oil, which is both largely foreign-owned and prone to large short-term changes in price and production levels. Unfortunately, the Treasury paper takes us no further forward in understanding the complexities of this issue.
Where does this leave an electorate that must feel like it is being carpet bombed by claim and counterclaim? Confused, probably.
It is difficult for non-experts to separate relevant facts, from fatuous "facts", from assertion.
This is partly to do with the fact Scotland lacks the sort of bodies able to rigorously and authoritatively challenge these claims, for example an Institute for Fiscal Studies, or even a specialist financial media outfit.
Unfortunately for the voter, it seems unlikely things will get better before Referendum Day.
John McLaren is a professor at the Centre For Public Policy For Regions, University Of Glasgow
Why it is wrong: By Nicola sturgeon Deputy First Minister
Recent official figures published by the Office for National Statistics suggesting Glasgow has the highest workless rate in the UK do not tell the full story.
For a start, additional analysis produced by the ONS give the unemployment rates for individuals across cities and regions of the whole of the UK, which show Glasgow in 20th place, behind many other major cities such as Birmingham, Manchester and Nottingham.
The difference is partly explained by the fact Glasgow has a high number of households where people are not able to work because of disability, sickness or family circumstances. Add to this that Glasgow has a strong student population - younger people who will be entering work and contributing to the economy for decades to come - and you start to get a different picture. Around 20% of those recorded as living in workless households are actually students compared to approximately 11% across Scotland as a whole. It would be perverse for this to be presented as a badge of failure.
There are thousands of people who work in Glasgow and its thriving hub but who live outside the city - more than half the people who work in Glasgow commute from outside the city's boundaries.
The reality is that Scotland is outperforming every country in the UK in terms of our unemployment and employment rates. We have proportionately more households in work than the rest of the UK and employment in Scotland is now at its highest rate in more than four years. Similarly, youth employment continues to fall, with Scotland performing better than the rest of the UK across all labour market measures for young people.
With the limited powers currently available to us, we are doing all we can to support and stimulate the Scottish economy. We are committed to building sustainable economic growth for all of Scotland and we are adopting a specifically Scottish approach to this. Nothing is more important than creating job opportunities and ensuring our future economic success can be supported and shared by all the people of Scotland.
However, it is clear the UK Government's economic policies are not working in Scotland's best interests. These policies have seen the UK become the fourth most unequal country in the developed world, something which is both economically inefficient and morally unacceptable.
The UK Government acknowledges this. In its "Plan for Growth" it highlighted that growth has been unbalanced, concentrated in London and the southeast and reliant on the financial services industry. Analysis suggests regional differences in GDP per capita are greater in the UK than in any other EU country
This is the union dividend: the greatest disparity in GDP per capita of any country in the EU. This is compounded with an austerity programme which is damaging the Scottish economy and their 8.9% real-terms cut to the Scottish budget between 2010-11 and 2015-16 is having a negative effect on the people of Scotland. The effects are particularly damaging in Glasgow. Research by academics at Sheffield Hallam University estimates the UK Government's cuts and changes to the welfare system will result in a loss of £270 million per year in the city. I believe we can do better.
In Glasgow this year, we have invested more than £3m to help young people find work. Last year, we invested £8.7m on the Modern Apprentice scheme in Glasgow, helping more than 4000 people into training leading to a recognised qualification, learning while they earn. The Commonwealth Games will also provide opportunities in the east end of Glasgow with 1300 places for locals to participate in jobs schemes.
This government wants all of Scotland to reach its full potential. In order to get there we need the tools to build that better, more prosperous and fairer country that everyone wants to see.
With the full fiscal and economic powers of independence, the Scottish Government could do more to strengthen our economy and create more jobs. That is why I believe an independent Scotland will ensure we provide greater opportunities, more and better jobs, and help us create a more prosperous and fairer society.