Philip Hammond recently delivered his second Budget as chancellor. Here are some of the key points of his speech :
Stamp duty to be abolished immediately for first-time buyers purchasing properties worth up to £300,000.
Tobacco will continue to rise by 2% above Retail Price Index (RPI) inflation, equivalent to 28p on a pack of 20, while the minimum excise duty on cigarettes introduced in March will also rise. Duty on hand-rolling tobacco will increase by additional 1%.
Duty on beer, wine, spirits and most ciders will be frozen, equating to 1p off a pint of beer and 6p of a typical bottle of wine. However, duty on high-strength “white ciders” to be increased in 2019 via new legislation.
Fuel duty rise for petrol and diesel cars scheduled for April 2018 scrapped.
Vehicle excise duty (road tax) for cars, vans and motorcycles registered before April 2017 to rise by inflation, and vehicle excise duty for new diesel cars not meeting latest standards to rise by one band in April 2018. Tax hike will not apply to van owners though.
Tax-free personal allowance on income tax to rise to £11,850 in line with inflation in April 2018. Higher-rate tax threshold to increase to £46,350
Short-haul air passenger duty rates and long-haul economy rates to be frozen, paid for by an increase on premium-class tickets and on private jets.
National Living Wage to rise in April 2018 by 4.4%, from £7.50 an hour to £7.83.