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Budget 2017

09 March 2017

Yesterday, we heard Philip Hammond present his first (and last!) Spring Budget speech, following his announcement last year that, after today, the annual Budget would again become an Autumn fixture going forward.

The last time someone made a similar change to the timing of the Budget was 24 years ago, when Norman Lamont was Chancellor. As Mr Hammond pointed out, only weeks later Norman was out of a job, and perhaps this was in the back of his mind as he continued – the number of jokes and quips he made along the way might suggest he’s already thinking about his next career?!

That aside, the 2017 Spring Budget seemed to be aimed at making the tax playing field a ‘fairer’ place to be, while trying to build a ‘stable and competitive’ tax regime. There were a handful of headline statements, which can be broadly summarised as follows:

  •  The introduction of quarterly accounting under Making Tax Digital (MTD) for businesses with a turnover of less than the VAT registration threshold (currently £83,000 but rising to £85,000 from April 2017) will be put back until April 2019 (we looked at MTD recently in a feature on our website, which you can view here)
  • The £5,000 nil rate for dividend income which was introduced from April 2016 will be reduced to £2,000 from April 2018 (the changes to dividend tax were covered in our news article when they were first announced, back in 2015)
  • The rate of Class 4 national insurance payable by the self-employed will rise to 10% from April 2018 and 11% from April 2019

There were also a number of announcements directed at redressing the tax balance between those who are employed, self-employed and those who operate their own company, with a review report on this subject being promised for later this year. This common thread seems to be echoed in the HMRC press releases published following the Budget, all of which are available to view here on HMRCs website.

As with all these things, the devil is in the detail and over the coming months we’ll bring you further updates and news on the last Spring Budget for a while! For more information right now, why not take a look at our Budget video update below – the video covers the above in a little more detail, along with commentary on many of the other announcements made yesterday.

Plus, don’t forget to download our Springfords app if you don’t already have it, to keep up to date with all of the latest tax and accounting news, and to have access to a variety of handy calculators and tax tables.

In the meantime, if you have any immediate queries please get in touch with your usual contact at Springfords.

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