Budget 2013 helps the man in the street, but not his bank account

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Beer In such a widely trailed Budget it no surprise that there were no real tax shocks or giveaways to be had when the chancellor sat down. But it was a shock to savers that there was not even a mention of them.




Thanks to the growing trend of leaking the Budget before the announcement we already knew about the scrapping of the beer duty escalator, that the £10,000 personal allowance will be brought in next year - a year early, and prime minister David Cameron even confirmed the 20% tax-relief on the first £6,000 of childcare for families where the parents earn £150,000, the day before the Budget.

A cynic would say George Osborne wanted to get all the good news out before the Budget to make sure it hit the headlines rather than get lost in the headlines about growth downgrades and the fact that he still hasn't come up with a 'plan B'.

This Budget was designed to make sure Osborne and the coalition are seen as a government of the people. After last year's Budget shambles where the coalition was accused of pandering to the wealthy with a 5p cut in the top rate of income tax to 45%, Osborne couldn't risk looking like a typical Tory again.

This Budget for the people may have helped the man on street spend less filling up his car but it hasn't done anything to help the man saving his hard-earned cash in the bank.

Thanks to the double whammy of historically low interest rates for the last four years and the Funding for Lending scheme which means the banks no longer need to rely on savers' deposits for cash to lend, savers have been finding it difficult to find savings rate that even beat inflation.

There had been calls for the government to help savers by doubling the cash ISA limit or introducing a tax-free incentive on top of the ISA incentive for those in savings accounts. Instead savers got a confirmation that interest rates will remain low for a long time and that the Funding for Lending scheme will be extended; both of which are confirmation that savers are heading for more pain.

As with every Budget it's not just what's announced that matters, but what's not announced and despite the small vote-winners, for savers this Budget wasn't what they wanted to hear.

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