Since the Chancellor announced the date of the first Autumn Statement in September, there has been a steady stream of leaks regarding the contents of his speech. The Chancellor promised to keep a strong, resilient and fair budget for everyone this time around. This comes after the attempted increase in taxes by increasing national insurance for the self employed and then the subsequent u-turn.
Interestingly one of the pre-budget developments is that the removal of Class 2 national insurance contributions has been pushed back a year. It seems that it would probably have been offset by an increase in Class 4 contributions and we have already seen the u-turn on that one.
There have been calls to scrap stamp duty by the Think-tank Adam Smith Institute as it is a tax that costs more to administer than benefit the treasury - based upon the value generated in the housing market and productivity of admin staff employed to monitor it.
There have been moves by the opposition parties to gather the support of younger voters and this has not been overlooked by the Conservatives, with the Chancellor looking into softening the economic hardship for those under-30 years old. Options being considered include an increase in personal allowance for these taxpayers, raising of the student loan repayment threshold and other measures regarding stepping on to the property ladder.
Drivers of diesel vehicles are possibly going to feel harsh penalties tomorrow - which, if applied retrospectively, could fuel some outrage.
In other areas there is not any money awash to offer headline grabbing reductions in tax or other fiscal adjustments that the populous will appreciate. The Scottish, now using their devolved tax powers to the maximum, are considering raising tax quite harshly from next April for anyone hovering anywhere near the higher rate threshold - with the planned introduction of up to six tax bands. We wonder whether the Budget tomorrow could be inspired and have any planned changes for the rest of the UK?
There have been a lot of whispers within the industry of a planned reduction in the threshold at which businesses are required to register for VAT. It is currently £85,000 meaning most sole traders can avoid it ... but plans are to reduce it to around £22,000 - which would cause a lot of problems for sole traders as well as force them to use the fledgling digital tax implementation from HMRC for VAT and other taxes.
If you are a looking for almost certain inclusions in tomorrow's speech then the following will definitely make an appearance:
- Increased measures to reduce tax evasion and tax avoidance.
- Removal of certain tax reliefs or caps applied to save money.
- More news on the planned digital tax system.
- Pensions tax relief and some change to cap or reduce relief given.
- The extension of new IR35 rules into the private sector.
We will be covering the budget tomorrow from noon and will update here - along with our Twitter account @uktaxcalculator or using hashtag #Budget2017 #AutumnBudget.