The Budget is back on!

December’s General Election put paid to the Government’s plans to hold a Budget on 6 November, but with the Conservatives having won a majority the Chancellor has now announced a new Budget date of Wednesday 11 March 2020.

Sajid Javid’s first Budget is also likely to be the first following Brexit, with the UK due to leave the EU on 31 January 2020.

The Budget should, therefore, provide a useful insight into the Government’s approach to business and the economy as the UK embarks on a future outside the EU.

Being a Budget following soon after a General Election and Queen’s Speech, we have had more indication about what it might contain than we usually do.

Key measures in the Conservative manifesto include cutting business rates following a review of the system, increasing Employment Allowance for small businesses and a clampdown on late payment.

The Conservatives also suggested that they will increase R&D tax credits to 13 per cent and review the definition of R&D, as well as announcing a review of Entrepreneurs’ Relief.

The manifesto reiterated the Conservatives’ pledge to widen the reach of the National Living Wage to everyone aged over 21 and eventually to increase it to two thirds of average earnings, which is currently forecast to be £10.50 an hour.

Meanwhile, other pledges included not raising the rates of income tax, National Insurance or VAT, while also committing to raise the National Insurance threshold to £9,500 this year.

December’s Queen’s Speech reaffirmed the commitment to business rates and R&D tax credits changes as well as more punitive sanctions for those convicted of tax fraud.

However, the manifesto also referred to generous spending, and there is pressure to support ‘The North’. At some point the country’s accounts do need to balance.

Whatever the Chancellor announces on Budget day, we will be ready to help you navigate the changes that affect you.

Contact me or a member of our team by visiting www.georgehay.co.uk or calling 01767 315010.

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