In the Budget the Chancellor revolutionised the pensions market by giving millions of pensioners who had carefully saved for their retirement the freedom to decide for themselves how to spend their pension savings. Now in the Autumn Statement the Chancellor has improved Stamp Duty by taking action that quite frankly should have been taken years ago, Until the Autumn Statement the system meant that the whole purchase price was taxed at a given rate if it exceeded a certain figure by even £1. This system distorted the market meaning people whose property was valued at around a changing point for Stamp Duty would do all they could do stop their property being charged the higher rate of duty. Now Stamp Duty operates like Income Tax with a nil rate band and each higher band being taxed at a set rate. This means that in the North West just 3 people in a thousand will pay more tax and 997 out of a thousand will pay the same or less tax.
This week’s Autumn Statement has confirmed that our economy is growing. In fact the independent Office for Budget Responsibility has upgraded its forecast for growth in the current year from 2.7% to 3%.The UK now has the fastest growing economy of any of the major advanced economies in the World. Unemployment is falling and inflation is low and expected to remain low.
Of course crystal ball gazing when it comes to the economy is always a tricky task. There are so many variables. The deficit is still too large that is to say the Government is still spending more each year than it collects . Each year the shortfall gets added to the nations debts. In essence we are spending money today that we are expecting our children and grandchildren to repay. that is why it is essential we finish the task we have begun.
The Autumn Statement covered many areas of great importance not least was the revolution in stamp duty the tax we pay when we buy a house. from midnight last night 98% of all homebuyers will pay less tax and in Bury it will be virtually every home buyer.