Aside from the traditions of the red box and the chancellor having an alcoholic drink while delivering his speech, both which still stand to this day (although only one of them is usually still adopted), it can sometimes be difficult for the man on the street to identify the announcements in the budget that directly affect them. Some of the main criticism directed at the Chancellor in recent weeks has been around his insistence that the economy is recovering while the average member of the public is struggling to personally feel the recovery. There were not too many Earth shattering announcements but here are the most significant that will affect the average individual and business owner.

Tax free personal allowance

is the amount money you can earn without paying any tax on it. This has increased to £10,500 meaning more money in the pocket for most employed and self-employed workers. 

Higher Rate Tax

The amount of income you earn over which you will pay 40% tax – increased to £41,865 and will rise again to £42,285 next year. 

Fuel Duty

The amount of the cost of your fuel which goes to the government. Planned rise will not happen, which is good news for anybody involved in business where fuel is a significant expense, e.g. transport and travel. 

Beer

Let’s be honest, this is the main fact that most people look for in the budget statement. The duty levied on beer is set to decrease by 1p, not likely to cause a significant difference to the average consumer. Tax on spirits and cider will remain frozen.

Tobacco

Duty will rise by 2% above inflation making smoking more expensive.

Ricky Steedman