23 March 2022
The Chancellor Rishi Sunak delivered todays Spring budget under the backdrop of inflation being revealed to have risen to 6.2%. The highest rate of inflation for 30 years. This had been made worse by rising fuel prices and will result in significant increases to the cost of living. There is also recognition of the situation in the Ukraine. The impact the ongoing conflict may have, as well as the relatively slow growth being seen in our own economy. In addition to the need to reduce the level of debt built up during the last two years to fund COVID measures.
To make his point, during his statement the Chancellor referenced these cumbersome estimates from the Office for Budget Responsibility on inflation, growth and debt repayments.
In line with the relatively low expectations of change ahead of today’s announcement, there were relatively small immediately effective measures to ease the burden of the cost of living were set out. There was however the promise of a 1% cut in income tax rates before the end of the current parliament in 2024 first cut to the basic rate of income tax in 16 years – from 20% to 19% – by the end of Parliament in 2024
Despite the economic picture painted and other indications given in advance as to the limited ability to make sweeping cuts that would have an immediate impact a shout of ‘is that it?!’ could clearly be heard from the Labour benches and there has been disappointment expressed at the fact that the proposed heath and social care level and subsequent NI rate increase were not scrapped as had been hoped for.
Here therefore are the key take aways from today’s Statement:
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