12.34 Monday 29 October 2018

In what will be the first Monday Budget since 1962, we take a look at what we expect to see from Chancellor Philip Hammond.

Here is what has already been pledged or speculated upon before the 15:30 Budget:

·         £20bn additional funding to the NHS

·         £2bn increase on mental health services

·         £30bn to be spent on repairing roads and motorways

·         £900m in rates relief for small businesses

·         £650m to rejuvenate UK High Streets

·         Personal allowance to rise to £12,500 before taxation

·         Higher tax rate of £50,000

·         An ‘Online Tax’ aimed towards retailers such as Amazon

It is worth noting that the above comes with many caveats as politics usually tends to spin the facts with eye catching headlines. For instance, the £20bn funding for the NHS is not a lump sum that will be delivered immediately, but represents a percentage increase that will equal £20bn in total by 2023-24. With regards to a special tax for online retailers, it is expected that plans may be outlined rather than set into place as a solution is not yet thought to be attained.

With all the ‘good’ listed above, there are two questions that come to mind… where will the additional finding come from? And how will Brexit affect any pledges?

Well, we will probably have to wait until 15;30 for definitive answers on this, but it has already been proclaimed by Mrs May that austerity has come to an end for Great Britain and in an announcement from the prime minister’s spokesperson this morning, any commitments made by the chancellor this afternoon will be funded irrespective to any Brexit outcome.

According to a poll taken by reputation consultancy firm Lansons, only 26% of those asked believed that the chancellor will be able to deliver on an achievable balance between spending and taxation.

Ahead of the Budget, the FTSE was up 1.75% at the time of publication on the back of strong performance from the banking and industrial sectors.

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