Which groups will benefit from George Osborne’s new budget and who are the unlucky ones set to lose out?
- Oil and gas industry: The Chancellor threw a lifeline to an industry under pressure from tumbling global prices, with tax cuts worth £1 billion over five years.
- Income tax payers: The threshold at which people start paying income tax will rise to £11,500 and the higher rate threshold to £40,000, taking 1.3 million individuals out of tax altogether. By 2017-18, a typical basic rate taxpayer will be paying £1,005 less and a higher rate taxpayer £1,118 less than in 2010.
- Corporation tax payers: The levy on businesses is being cut to 17 per cent – the lowest rate in the G20. Cuts to the tax are worth a total of almost £15 billion a year to business by 2020.
- Small businesses: The 100 per cent exemption from business rates is being extended from properties with a rateable value of £6,000 to £12,000, and being made permanent, with a tapered rate of relief for those worth up to £15,000. This will mean 600,000 businesses paying no rates.
- Motorists: Yet again, Mr Osborne has frozen fuel duty, meaning van drivers will save £12 each time they fill their tank, compared to 2010.
- Beer, cider and spirit drinkers: Alcohol duty on these is frozen, saving drinkers £85 million a year if the benefit is passed on.
- Primary school sports classes: They will see their funding double thanks to money from the sugary drinks levy.
- AirBnB landlords: People who make money from their property via online sharing sites will be able to earn £1,000 tax-free.
- People saving for their first home: Under-40s will be able to open a new Lifetime Individual Savings Account (a “Lisa”), gaining a 25 per cent bonus from the government for savings of up to £4,000 a year towards buying a home.
- The soft drinks industry: Rather than imposing a blanket sugar tax, Mr Osborne has hit drink manufacturers and importers with a new levy on high-sugar drinks expected to bring in £520 million a year.
- Public sector employers: They are facing a £2 billion increase in the cost of providing pensions to workers from 2019-20.
- Wine drinkers: The tax on a 75cl bottle rises to £2.09 in line with inflation.
- Smokers who roll their own: An above-inflation hike worth £10 million a year is targeted at self-rolling tobacco.
- Overseas traders: Traders using websites like Amazon and eBay to sell goods from abroad will face de-listing if they do not pay VAT in the UK.
A BIT OF BOTH
The G&T set: Lovers of gin and tonic will have been cheered by the freeze on duties on spirits, only to find that the new soft drinks levy will hit their favourite mixer.