On 15 March 2023, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt delivered the Spring Budget, accompanied by a forecast from the Office for Budget Responsibility.
Here's an overview and key facts:
Chancellor of the Exchequer, Jeremy Hunt, said he is predicting the UK will avoid recession in 2023, with inflation set to fall from 10.7% in 2022 to 2.9% by the end of 2023.
In his first budget the chancellor unveiled a new ‘full expensing’ tax scheme, abolished the pensions lifetime allowance, and announced extra free childcare.
Hunt confirmed the rise in corporation tax rise from 19% to 25%. He confirmed just 10% of all companies will pay the full 25%, and only firms earning more than £250,000 will pay the full 5% tax on their profits from April.
For the next three years the government is introducing a ‘full expensing’ scheme. That means every £1 invested can immediately be deducted from taxable profits. Hunt explained: “Every single pound a company invests in IT equipment, plant or machinery can be deduced in full and immediately from taxable profits – a cut worth £9bn.” This replaces the “super deduction” previously in place.
There will be cuts for small and medium companies investing more than 40% of their total expenditure in research and development – that will be worth £27 for every £100 spent.
The annual investment allowance for smaller businesses has been increased to £1m. That will mean 99% of all businesses can deduct the full value of all their investment from that year’s taxable profits.
The pensions annual tax-free allowance has increased from £40,000 to £60,000, abolishing the pensions lifetime allowance that was previously set at £1m (£1,073,000).
The government is planning to provide 30 hours of free weekly childcare for children below the age of three where both parents are working. The government will also pay childcare costs upfront for parents on Universal Credit who want to increase their work hours - the maximum they can claim is £951 for one child and £1,630 for two children per month.
A series of measures to lure over-50s back into work was also annoucned. A new apprenticeship scheme will target at this group, called “returnships”.
12 new investment zones (IZs) were announced. These are West Midlands, Greater Manchester, the North-East, South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, East Midlands, Teesside, and Liverpool.
Other measures included:
The Energy Price Guarantee will remain at £2,500 for next three months.
Duty on a pint has been ‘frozen’. From 1 August duty on draught products in pubs will be 11p lower than supermarkets.
Fuel duty will be frozen and the 5p cut maintained for another 12 months.
Creation of a £63m fund to keep public leisure centres and pools afloat.
Nuclear power to be classed as “environmentally sustainable” in green taxonomy.
The 45% and 50% tax reliefs have been extended for theatres, orchestras, and museums.
The main personal tax-free allowance and the 40% tax rate threshold remain frozen at their 2022/23 levels until the end of 2027/28, representing a tax rise where income increases.
The 45% threshold is lowered from £150,000 to £125,140 for 2023/24.
Tax-free dividend allowance falls from £2,000 to £1,000, and Capital Gains Tax annual exempt amount falls from £12,300 to £6,000, for 2023/24.
Pension savings thresholds significantly increased: from 6 April 2023, Annual Allowance rises from £40,000 to £60,000 (with related changes to tapering and Lifetime Allowance Charge is abolished; maximum tax-free lump sum remains 25% of former Lifetime Allowance, i.e. £268,275.
ISA investment limit remains £20,000.
Increase in limit for shares that can be granted under Company Share Ownership Plans confirmed at £60,000.
Small Enterprise Investment Scheme limits increased from 6 April 2023 – maximum for investor is doubled to £200,000.
IHT thresholds and rates unchanged to the end of 2027/28.
Confirmation of corporation tax rate increase from 19% to 25% from 1 April 2023 for profits over £250,000.
‘Super-deduction’ for plant and machinery bought up to 31 March 2023 replaced by 100% first-year allowance for qualifying capital expenditure, without upper limit, for three years from 1 April 2023.
Improvements to Research & Development tax reliefs from 1 April 2023.
Reforms to audio-visual tax reliefs from 1 April 2024.
For more information on the budget, search 'Spring Budget 2023' on GOV.UK.
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