HAMMOND TRIES TO GET HIS HOUSE IN ORDER
The embattled and isolated Chancellor was under pressure to be bold and imaginative in his first Budget speech since the general election, though that is not really “Spreadsheet Phil's” style, says Top 30 advisory firm, Bishop Fleming.
The firm, which delivers accounting, tax, corporate restructuring and advisory services to businesses and private wealth advice to individuals, states the Budget was not the transformative event that was needed for the UK economy.
Bishop Fleming's Head of Tax, Andrew Browne, said: “Philip Hammond has yet to demonstrate the required dynamism and vision to create a progressive tax regime that is powerful enough to energise a post-Brexit economy into an entrepreneurial powerhouse, and raise the standard of living.
Whilst he is donning his hard hat and opening the public purse to drive forward the much-needed house building programme and development of the UK's infrastructure, it is well short of being bold enough.
The abolition of stamp duty for first time buyers on the first £300,000 of houses worth up to £500,000 is very welcome, but although assisting this does not solve the fundamental issue of the affordability of a deposit and mortgage.
And although the Chancellor recognises the need for greater UK productivity, tax-geared investment incentives still need a bigger boost, as will the funds needed to ensure we have adequate social care for our ageing population.
The Chancellor is again softening the impact of business rate increases, but the much needed root-and-branch reform of this regressive and archaic tax is still some way off.”
Mr. Browne slammed the Budget for failing to tackle the real issues facing small businesses, such as rates reform, tax complexity and red tape.