Autumn Statement 2014: key points

A roundup of the key announcements

Osborne answers question on financial services regulation

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  • Current Stamp Duty to be replaced with income tax-like tier based system. Osborne says 98% of housebuyers will benefit. Effective as of midnight
  • Higher rate income tax threshold rises to £42,385
  • £100 added to tax-free personal allowance
  • Pensions and ISAs can be passed on to loved ones tax-free

  • BIG SURPRISE: Current Stamp Duty tax to be replaced with income tax-like tier based system*. Osborne says 98% of housebuyers will benefit
  • *New Stamp Duty thresholds: 0% on first £125k; 2% on portion up to £250,000; 5% up to £925,000; 10% up to £1.5 million, 12% on everything over that
  • Higher rate tax payers to benefit from personal rate tax allowance increase for the first time 40% threshold up to £42,385
  • Tax-free personal allowance will rise instead to £10,600 in 2015 (was supposed to be £10,500). Pledge to increase threshold to £15,000 by 2020
  • National insurance abolished for young people doing apprenticeships
  • Osborne: "When someone dies, the spouse will be able to inherit their ISA and keep tax free status"
  • As expected, 55% 'death tax' for unused pensions will be scrapped
  • Loans of up to £10,000 promised to all young people planning to undertake postgraduate qualifications
  • Boost for families: Air Passenger Duty for under-12s "abolished" next year
  • Boost for SMEs: Small business rate relief is doubled.
  • "Richest 20% in Britain will pay more tax than remaining 80%, meaning we really are in this altogether" - old chestnut from Mr Osborne
  • Osborne targets big business: multinationals to pay 25% tax on profits generated in UK
  • Targeting tax avoidance, evasion and aggressive tax planning will bring the Treasury "at least another £5 billion" - Osborne
  • "This year, we will spend £10bn less than set out in original spending plans" - Osborne
  • Substantial savings in public spending are needed, says the chancellor
  • Borrowing forecast to be £91.3bn this year, down from £97.5bn forecast
  • Inflation expected to be 1.2% next year
  • Above-inflation rises for wages for next five years, says Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR)
  • For every day this government has been in office, 1,000 new jobs have been created.
  • Labour calls on Prime Minister to admit he broke his promise on reducing deficit
  • Osborne defends rise in borrowing - says deficit is still half what it was when govt took power
  • Pound nudges up ahead of Autumn Statement
George Osborne: Let Us Stay on Course to Prosperity


Here are some headline measures to look out for:

Cut in Stamp Duty?
There are rumours that the lower threshold of Stamp Duty could be cut to help first-time buyers in particular. However, in these times of austerity there is no such thing as a free lunch. Costs would be recouped by hiking Stamp Duty on pricey homes.

Big boost for small businesses
A widely expected announcement. Osborne will unveil unlock up to a billion pounds of investment for small and medium sized businesses.

Devolution of tax powers?
During the Better Together campaign, promises were made to the Scottish people, and those promises included the devolution of further tax powers. There were then demands for tax powers to be devolved to both the nations and regions of the UK, so some analysts have suggested this may come up in the Autumn Statement.

£1.5bn for the NHS?
Deputy PM Nick Clegg recently told a press conference that he believes the statement will include extra spending on the NHS.

He said it will include a pledge to spend an extra £1.5billion to allow the service to deal with next winter's demands, and to signal a "step-change" in the way healthcare is funded.

Pensioner bonds?
The chancellor will reveal the details of plans for the state-owned savings bank National Savings & Investments to launch market-beating bonds for people aged 65 and above. He first announced these in his March Budget Statement.

Pensioners have seen the interest they earn on savings plummet, thanks to the low interest rates that so many rely on. The new bonds will offer market-beating rates and should support pensioners who rely on income from their savings.

However, not everyone is thrilled. In fact, Nationwide has warned that it will take money away from the economy and even affect building societies' ability to lend.

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