The Chancellor of The Exchequer’s Autumn Statement highlights.
6th December 2016
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There was much speculation about the nature of Mr Hammond’s statement with the press doing their best to second guess what he would say. Since the change in Leadership in July, and his appointment, much has happened with little said in public about Brexit and any financial implications following the gloomy predictions from certain quarters.

One interesting change is the moving of the annual Budget Statement from Spring to Autumn, meaning that the Nation must wait until Autumn 2017 for the next budget.

Business announcements.

National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF) is a new initiative with £23 billion of additional spending, ensuring the UK’s economy is fit for the future. NPIF will provide major additional spending in areas that are key to boosting productivity: transport, digital communications, research and development (R&D), and housing.

Fuel duty will remain frozen for a seventh year, saving drivers £130 pa on average.

The National Living Wage and the National Minimum Wage will increase from April 2017, for those aged 25 plus will increase to £7.50 per hour. Meaning £1,400+ pa more for a full-time worker previously on the National Minimum Wage, and £4.3 million will be spent on helping SMEs to understand the rules and cracking on down on employers who break the law by paying below the minimum wage.

A ban on letting agents charging fees to renters, this will stop tenants being hit with fees averaging £223 per tenancy.

£2.3 billion for a new Housing Infrastructure Fund, will be used for roads and water connections to support the construction of up to 100,000 new homes where they are needed most. Plus, £1.4 billion to provide 40,000 new affordable homes, some for shared ownership, some for affordable rent. £1.7 billion will be used to speed up the construction of new homes on public sector land.

£390 million investment in future transport technology i.e. driverless cars, renewable fuels and energy efficient transport.

£1 billion to invest in full-fibre broadband and trialing 5G networks. To support the private sector roll out more full-fibre broadband by 2020-21. From April 2017, the government will provide a new 100% business rates relief for new full-fibre infrastructure for 5 years.

Committing to cutting corporation tax to 17%by 2020 the lowest in the G20, benefiting over 1 million businesses.

£400 million through the British Business Bank to invest in growing innovative firms, to provide the finance that they need to expand. This will support up to £1 billion of new investment.

Salary sacrifice schemes to be taxed more fairly, from April 2017 most salary sacrifice schemes will be taxed as if cash income. 

If you'd like to discuss how any of these announcements might impact on your business directly, please do get in touch with Ashdown Hurrey or Gibbons Mannington & Phipps. Either of these accountancy practices will be well placed to help. 

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