Posted: 18/03/2015

BUDGET 2015: How does it affect FFD’s readers?

George Osborne
Chancellor George Osborne

Chancellor George Osborne presented the current Government’s final budget as one that will help small businesses and the self-employed.

In addition to the major review of business rates announced earlier this week, George Osborne has pledged to abolish employer National Insurance contributions for young staff, freeze fuel duty and cut Corporation Tax.

Here are the measures that could affect your business:

  • National Insurance cuts – From April 2015, employers will no longer have to make NI contributions for employees under 21 years old. Contributions for apprentices will be abolished in April 2016.
  • Self-employment – Class 2 National Insurance contributions for the self-employed will also be abolished entirely in the next parliament. Annual tax returns will be scrapped in favour of new digital tax accounts that will be automatically updated.
  • Corporation Tax – The Government will look to set the rate of Corporation Tax at 20% for the financial year beginning on April 1 2016.
  • Fuel duty – The fuel duty increase of 0.54 pence per litre scheduled for 1 September 2015 has been scrapped, continuing the duty freeze.
  • Farmers’ incomes – Farmers will now be allowed to average their incomes over five years, for tax purposes. The National Farmers Union has long campaigned for this change.
  • Minimum wage rises – It was announced this week, prior to the Budget, that the Government will increase the National Minimum Wage by 20p to £6.70. This is in line with the Low Pay Commission’s recommendations.
  • Business rates – In another pre-Budget announcement, the Treasury unveiled plans for a strategic review of business rates. It will look at how the system can be reformed to better reflect changes in economic circumstances, promote economic growth and relieve the smallest businesses from the burden of rates.
  • Alcohol duty – Duty on beer, spirits and cider will be reduced by 2%. Wine duty remains frozen.
  • £1 coin – The new shape and materials for a new £1 coin were confirmed with its introduction expected in early 2017.

What do you make of the Budget? Email us with your views:


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