Robinson Reed Layton Budget seminar


Local tax expert, Steve Maggs, partner at chartered accountancy Robinson Reed Layton, is hosting a free breakfast Autumn Budget summary later this month.

The event, on Thursday, November 30 at the Penventon Park Hotel in Redruth, will explore the full impact of the Chancellor’s announcements.

In anticipation, Steve ‘Mystic’ Maggs has commented on the upcoming Budget, noting that Cornwall in particular should be keenly watching the Chancellor’s statement.

He said: “Cornish businesses have benefited hugely from grants and investment from Europe in recent years, and I will be keeping an eye out in particular for any announcements that address the expected post-Brexit changes.

“I’m also expecting to see some policy changes regarding housing – always a key issue in Cornwall – as well as several affecting SMEs and the self-employed, who make up a significant part of the local economy.”

Mystic Maggs’ five key predictions for the Autumn Budget are:

  • Housing to be central – Expect housing to be a focus, with the government keen to generate some positive headlines. Look out for offerings to encourage the building of more homes and to help more people become upwardly mobile. There could be a move to cut stamp duty for the young or first-time buyers
  • Benefits-in-kind to be included in PAYE – Increasing cash flow through real time information has been on the Treasury’s hit list for some time now. I predict the Chancellor will announce a move to bring benefits-in-kind into the PAYE regime and generate a cash-flow benefit for the Treasury
  • Abolition of the dividend allowance – With a cut in the dividend allowance from £5,000 to £2,000 due to come into force next April, it would not be a surprise to see the allowance abolished altogether. Also expect an announcement that dividends will be reported to HMRC as they are paid – continuing the drive for ‘real time information’
  • Alterations to VAT – One to watch out for is changes to VAT. Alterations to the threshold have been mooted in the press, so a freeze of the threshold (currently £85,000 and set to rise in line with RPI) at which businesses must charge VAT on their goods and services may be on the cards
  • Tax relief changes for growth – As the Treasury takes with one hand, so it must give with the other. In a drive to encourage investment in order to increase productivity, I expect an increase in the capital allowances ‘Annual Investment Allowance’ from £200k to around £500k.

“Overall, I am not expecting seismic changes,” added Maggs. “It is not in Philip Hammond’s nature. I expect a highly politicised budget, reflecting the Conservative’s need to woo voters, whilst still attempting to balance the books.

“However, with the government’s majority gone and against the backdrop of ongoing Brexit negotiations, I do not see this as the moment for the Chancellor to throw caution to the wind with a major change of policy direction.

“With the Budget moving from Spring to Autumn, I expect to see the usual series of U-turns and changes following the speech on the 22nd November. I will be offering a considered analysis of the announcements (including any U-turns!) for all those interested in how the Budget will affect them, their business and Cornwall.”

To book your place at Robinson Reed Layton’s Autumn Budget Seminar, click here.