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Autumn Statement predictions



Posted: November 20th, 2015

With the 2015 Autumn Statement now just a week away our experts have put together their predictions for what they think The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, will announce in his address to the nation. 

Tax credits

Following his recent (and well publicised) defeat in the House of Lords, there is no doubt that tax credits will be discussed in the Autumn Statement.  We recently saw the proposed £4.4bn spending cuts on working tax credit and child tax credit postponed.  Following this we predict that Mr Osborne will announce how he plans to ease the transition to lower tax credits with his ‘low welfare, high wage economy’ plan still in place.

Devolution

There has been much talk and focus on the ‘Northern Powerhouse’ of late and we should expect to hear further details of how the Government will attempt to balance regional disparity in the UK with cities being given more freedom and power to make decisions locally, rather than following Westminster’s lead. 

Fuel taxes

Following the recent Volkswagen scandal, and with oil prices at a record low, we should expect the possibility of a rise in fuel duty and higher vehicle excise duty rates. 

Housing

With house prices expected to soar in coming years, which will increase the demand for rental properties, we expect to hear more about plans to repurpose empty prison buildings and create more affordable housing across the UK to tackle the housing shortage.  

Tax avoidance

Tax avoidance featured heavily in the interim Summer Budget back in July and we should expect to hear more from the Chancellor on how he plans to help raise £400million for the exchequer through his avoidance crackdown. 

Pensions tax relief

As announced in his last Budget, George Osborne pledged that he would consult on plans that could see pensions taxed similarly to the way ISAs are.  The results of this consultation will hopefully be announced during the Autumn Statement but speculation is that we will have to wait until March’s Budget to hear of any significant changes. 

Capital Gains Tax (CGT)

We could see a shake-up of CGT with the possible removal of relief that is currently available when transferring shares to a family member, or when incorporating property letting businesses.

Inheritance Tax (IHT)

We could also see the potential removal, or restriction, of IHT exemption when passing on a business or farmland through business property relief and agricultural property relief.  The removal of these reliefs would unfortunately affect many in our local area, especially in the farming community.  However with the new five year Farmers’ Averaging coming into play in April 2016 we can only hope that our agricultural community will once again benefit from the Autumn Statement. 

For more information on the Autumn Statement, or anything tax related, please give our Tax Specialists a call on 01228 711888.