The Autumn Budget 2018 – as it happened



• ‘A Budget for hardworking families’

• ‘A new chapter in our country’s economic history’

• ‘Eight straight years of economic growth’

• ‘An economy working for everyone. An economy back on its feet again’

• ‘Austerity is coming to an end but discipline will remain’

The economic background

• Since 2010 over 3.3 million people in work

• Pay growth 3.1% – the strongest for a decade

• OBR growth forecasts very steady at about 1.5% annually over the next 5 years – no post Brexit dip


• If necessary to deal with a hard Brexit, the Spring Statement in 2019 will be upgraded to a Budget

• Further funding for public spending will be available from the expected ‘Brexit dividend’

Public spending

• Increased NHS spending as already announced, and an NHS ten year plan to be published shortly

• Additional funds for social care and a Green Paper to follow

• Universal Credit – funds to help with transition and to finance an increase in work allowances

• An additional £1 billion for defence spending

• £420 million to tackle potholes, bridge repairs and other minor road works

• £1.6 billion to support the Government’s industrial strategy

• No more Private Finance Initiative (PFI) contracts

Personal taxation

• Personal allowance rises to £12,500 in 2019/20

• Higher rate income tax threshold rises to £50,000 in 2019/20

• Capital gains tax (CGT) lettings relief for principal private residences restricted

• CGT entrepreneurs’ relief minimum ownership period up from one year to two years

• ‘IR35’ rules for personal service companies – last year’s changes for public sector employers extended to large and medium-sized employers in the private sector from April 2020

• SDLT first-time buyers relief extended to shared ownership

Business taxation

• Annual investment allowance limit to increase to £1 million from £200,000 for two years
• A new 2% capital allowance for non-residential structures and buildings

• National insurance employer allowance to be restricted to smaller companies

• New UK digital services tax from 1 April 2020 for profitable businesses with turnover over £500 million unless international agreement reached before then

• Business rates for small retailers reduced by one third

• Oil industry tax rates unchanged

Excise duties

• Fuel duties frozen for the ninth successive year

• Beer, cider and spirits duties frozen

• Duty on wine rises in line with RPI


• National Minimum Wage up to £8.21 from April 2019

• A package of measures on tax avoidance and evasion

• Various environmental measures including a tax on plastic packaging

• No immediate tax on disposable plastic cups but this will be kept under review

• New 26-30 railcard for young people providing one-third off fares

Leave a comment

 Security code