Business

Budget 2021 at a glance

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak outside 11 Downing Street on Wednesday. Picture by Aaron Chown/PA Wire.

• Furlough and support for self-employed extended until the end of September, with employers contributing from July.

• Additional £410m announced for Stormont.

• The minimum wage set to increase to £8.91 an hour from April.

• Extended the stamp duty holiday for properties less than £500,000 until the end of June, then a new £250,000 threshold will apply until the end of September before the £125,000 starting point is reintroduced.

• Extended the 5 per cent reduced rate of VAT for the tourism and hospitality sector to the end of September, with an interim rate of 12.5 per cent for another six months after that.

• Rates of income tax, national insurance and VAT kept at the same level but personal tax thresholds will be frozen from April 2026.

• Temporary £20-a-week increase in Universal Credit payments to continue for a further six months.

• New ‘mortgage guarantee’, with lenders who provide mortgages to homebuyers who can only afford a 5 per cent deposit benefitting from a Government guarantee on those mortgages.

• Freeze on all alcohol duties and planned increase in fuel duty is scrapped.

• ‘Super deduction’ for companies when they invest, reducing their tax bill by 130 per cent of the cost for the next two years.

• New Recovery Loan Scheme replaces previous coronavirus loan packages, allowing businesses of any size to apply for loans from £25,000 up to £10m through to the end of the year, with the UK Government providing lenders with an 80 per cent guarantee.

• The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) now forecasting "a swifter and more sustained recovery", but states the UK economy will be 3 per cent smaller than it would have been in five years' time because of the coronavirus crisis.

• Borrowing is forecast to be £234bn next year - 10.3 per cent of UK GDP, falling to 4.5 per cent of GDP in 2022-23, 3.5 per cent in 2023-24, then 2.9 per cent and 2.8 per cent in the following two years.

• OBR forecasts UK economy will grow by 4 per cent in 2021, by 7.3 per cent in 2022, then 1.7 per cent, 1.6 per cent and 1.7 per cent in the last three years of the forecast.

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