Autumn Budget 2017: Key Announcements

After much speculation around what will be announced the Chancellor delivered his Autumn Budget to Parliament on 22nd November 2017.

Here is an overview of the key announcements.

Stamp Duty and Housing

With the aim to help young people Mr Hammond announced that stamp duty will be abolished for all first-time buyers who purchasing houses worth up to £300,000. This will also be available on the first £300,000 of the purchase price of properties up to £500,000.

At least £44 billion of capital funding, loans and guarantees will be given over the next five years to support house-building. A target of 3000,000 homes annually has been set and is expected to be met ‘by the mid-2020s’

Kensington and Chelsea Council will receive an extra £28m for mental health services and regeneration in support of the Grenfell Tower fire.

NHS and Healthcare

A £10bn package of capital investment in frontline services across this parliament. £2.8bn has been made available to the NHS in England, with £350m available immediately for this winter. This is less than he £4bn requested by Simon Stevens, head of the NHS. Additional funding has been promised for nurses wages.

Education

University tuition fees have been frozen at £9,025 a year. Post-2012 students will only repay their loans when they earn £25,000 or more and there is action to stop people overpaying the loans.

£177m has been provided to give schools £600 for every extra student who takes A-level maths. And a fund of £42m will support £1,000 grants for training teachers in ‘fallen behind’ areas.

Transport

From April 2018 the first year VED rate for diesel cars that don’t meet latest standards will increase by one band. This will not affect vans and money raised because of this announcement will go towards the Clean Air Fund.

The fuel duty rise that was scheduled for April 2018 has been scrapped.

Driverless cars will be on the road by 2021.

A ‘Millennial railcard’ will be available for people between 26-30 years old.

Brexit

£3bn will be provided for Brexit preparations over the next two years

Business

Anti-tax avoidance and evasion measures are claimed to rise £4.8bn a year by 2022-23. The ‘Indexation allowance’ for Capital gains will be frozen from January 2018.

There is no change to the £85,000 VAT threshold.

Future business rates reassessments will take place every 3 years instead of every 5.

Digital tax: Income tax will be charged on royalties on UK sales that are then passed to low tax countries which will raise £200m a year.

Alcohol, tobacco, gambling and fuel

Tobacco will continue to rise by 2% above RPI inflation.

Whilst duty on most alcohol will be frozen, high strength ‘white ciders’ will be increased.

Wages

National Living Wage will rise in April 2018 by 4.4%, from £7.50ph to £7.83ph. Minimum wages for employees aged 21-24 to rise from £7.05 to £7.38, aged 18-20 to rise from £5.60 to £5.90, aged 16-17 to rise from £4.05 to £4.20 and Apprentice wages to rise from £3.50 to £3.70.

TAX

The tax-free personal allowance will increase to £11,850 in April 2018 with a high-rate tax threshold increasing to £46,350.

National Living Wage will also rise in April 2018 by 4.4%, from £7.50ph to £7.83ph.

Benefits

The six-week waiting time for Universal Credit is to be cut to five weeks as part of a £1.5billion package. Universal Credit advances will be worth a full month’s pay and repayment period will be doubled from six to twelve months. Individuals receiving Housing Benefits will continue to get the benefits for two weeks during the transition to Universal Credit.

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