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Government Budget Summaries

Our budget summaries covers the key tax changes announced in the Chancellor’s speeches and includes tables of the main rates and allowances and key points to note.

March 2024 Budget

In past years, the annual Budget was shrouded in secrecy. No one was supposed to know what was in the Red Box that the Chancellor held up outside 11 Downing Street on his way to Parliament.
There was an element of suspense. Now it seems that most of the proposals were predicted in the morning papers – the television pundits were reduced to speculating whether Jeremy Hunt would produce ‘a rabbit from his hat’, but it turned out that the hat only contained what was expected.
The further reduction in National Insurance Contributions, over and above cuts already announced in the Autumn Statement, is certainly a significant measure, reducing the Government’s projected income by £10 billion a year. A reduction in the rate of income tax would be more expensive to achieve, because it would affect all taxpayers, not just those in work – but maybe that is a rabbit for another day, closer to the General Election that must happen within a year.

Autumn Statement 2023

Discover a wave of changes unveiled in the recent Autumn Statement by Chancellor [Mr. Hunt]. Among the key highlights are reductions in National Insurance for both employees and the self-employed, effective from January and April 2024, respectively. These bold moves are complemented by the permanence of 100% first-year allowances for companies, an extension of the 'cash basis' for computing taxable profits for unincorporated businesses, and notable reforms in tax reliefs for research, development, and creative industries. The statement also reaffirms support for the state pension 'triple lock,' featuring an 8.5% increase from April 2024 based on average earnings. Importantly, while no changes were announced to Income Tax, Inheritance Tax, or Stamp Duty Land Tax, a streamlined approach to Making Tax Digital is set to roll out in April 2026.

March 2023 Budget

Jeremy Hunt opened his first full Budget speech by declaring that
it was a ‘budget for growth’. He emphasised that this would be
‘long term, sustainable, healthy growth’; after all, Kwasi Kwarteng’s
ill-fated September speech at the same despatch box was titled ‘the Growth Plan’. The Office for Budget Responsibility reported that there is unlikely to be any growth in 2023, but the UK is likely at least to avoid a recession.

After the turmoil of four Chancellors of the Exchequer and three fiscal statements in 2022, it was to be expected that Mr Hunt would try to avoid too many surprises. As usual, there was plenty of speculation about what he might do – some people hoped that better than expected tax revenues would encourage him to be
generous. In the event, the great majority of the tax announcements had been made in advance, and most of the speech concentrated on spending plans.

Autumn Statement 2022

When the Chancellor of the Exchequer makes a fiscal statement to Parliament - whether it is called a Budget, a mini-Budget or an Autumn Statement – the headlines are in the speech and the details are in the Treasury Red Book that is published on the internet when he sits down. In normal times, it is hard enough to keep track of changes that come in immediately, changes that are coming soon, and proposals that are on the horizon.

This year is not normal. There have been four Chancellors and three fiscal statements. The challenge following Jeremy Hunt’s first Autumn Statement has been to identify what, if anything, of Kwasi Kwarteng’s proposals survived, as well as understanding the steps he has taken to fill the holes in the government coffers that the ill-fated September ‘Plan for Growth’ helped to create. There has been a great deal of speculation about what Mr Hunt might do, and sometimes an awareness of what has not been said can be important too.

Emergency Budget 2022

In his first Budget speech as Chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng said that ‘we need a new approach for a new era, focused on growth’. He would build this around three priorities: reforming the supply side of the economy, maintaining a responsible approach to public finances, and cutting taxes to boost growth. What followed certainly delivered on the third of these:
this package has been described as the biggest tax cutting budget for half a century, following on from the earlier announcement of very substantial support for individuals and businesses coping with rising energy prices.

March 2022 Budget

The Chancellor presented two Budgets in 2021 in which he set out a great many details of the tax rates and rules that will apply until April 2026. The 2022 Spring Statement was expected to review the economic situation and adjust forecasts, but was not supposed
to include anything significant about tax. Of course, things have changed dramatically since October: there is a war in Ukraine, energy prices are rising sharply and inflation has returned to levels last seen in the early 1990s. An announcement had already been made in February of measures to help people with fuel bills later in the year, and commentators were speculating how much more Mr Sunak might do now, with tax receipts running higher than
forecast and the effect of inflation set to increase those receipts
in the future. Most predicted he would do something, but many believed he would be cautious and leave significant changes for the next Budget. In the event, his speech contained more on tax than almost anyone could have expected.

Government Budget Summaries: News and Updates
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