So, we’ve cut through the endless commentary on new chancellor Rishi Sunak's speech to MPs in the House of Commons and put together a synopsis of the main points that will affect the pound in your pocket.
The day started with a dramatic decrease in interest rates, with the Bank of England reducing the base rate from 0.75% to 0.25%, making it cheaper to borrow 📉
The Budget itself was one of vast spending commitments and one strongly influenced by Coronavirus 🦠. In real terms, the Chancellor said, public investment will now be at its highest since 1955. We saw a £30bn Coronavirus-related stimulus package to plug any economic gaps left in its wake, £175bn over five years for investment infrastructure, which includes key services like the NHS, and a £5bn spend on better broadband 💻
- Come next year, the planned increase in duty on spirits and beer will be cancelled.
- Duty on wine, cider and fuel will be frozen.
- The National Insurance Contributions tax threshold will rise from £8,632 to £9,500.
- The ‘tampon tax’ has been abolished.
Earning and saving
- The Living Wage will go up to £10.50 an hour by 2024.
- The Junior ISA and Child Trust Fund allowance is set to increase from £4,368 to £9,000 in April, for the 2020/21 tax year.
Health and benefits
- The minimum income level for Universal Credit has been temporarily removed to absorb costs for those who have been advised to self-isolate due to COVID-19 and are not entitled to sick pay.
- Under these temporary measures, successful benefits claimants are now entitled to claim from day one of making their application, which replaces the usual ‘waiting period’.
- For those who have been advised to self-isolate due to COVID-19, there will be a telephone service via 111, whereby people can request a sick note there and then.
- Businesses with fewer than 250 employees will be compensated for any money they’ve lost as a result of employees having to take up to 14 days off due to the virus.
- Mr Sunak promised that the Government would do “whatever it takes” to stem Coronavirus outbreaks and will provide extra NHS funding to deal with the crisis.
- 40 new hospitals around the country will be built.
- Funding specifically for specialist maths schools will be available around the UK.
- £1.5bn over five years will be dedicated to making further education better.
Homes and the environment
- £12bn will be poured into building affordable homes.
- Electric car drivers will never be more than 30 miles from a rapid car-charging hub.
- £120m for flood damage repair will be available immediately, as well as an increased budget for future disaster relief.
- There will be a tax on plastic packaging.
Let us know your thoughts on this year’s Budget and whether or not it will leave you better off, by tweeting @myeva_app.
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