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Philip Hammond has unveiled a gloomy forecast for Britain's growth and a £3 billion fund to prepare for a no-deal Brexit in his second Budget as Chancellor. But there was some good news for small businesses and some extra funding for the NHS. And first time buyers will see a huge cut to stamp duty - even though experts say it might actually raise house prices leaving them back at Square One. 

The Chancellor attempted to fight back after a shambolic first Budget and months of in-fighting with his own Cabinet over Brexit.

With immediate effect: new announcements

  • From 22 November 2017, Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) abolished for first time buyers on homes costing up to £300,000.
  • From 29 November 2017, Marriage Allowance can be claimed to transfer the benefit of 10% of the personal allowance after the transferring spouse has died.
  • For tax year 2017/18, unincorporated property business landlords will have the option to use simpler fixed rate deductions for miles travelled by car, motorcycle or goods vehicle for business journeys.
  • From 6 April 2017, anti-avoidance measures will tackle ‘disguised remuneration’ schemes used by closely controlled companies to remunerate employees who have a material interest.

From 1 January 2018: new announcements

  • Indexation allowance will be frozen at January 2018.
  • Research and Development Expenditure Credit increases from 11% to 12% with effect from 1 January 2018.

From April 2018: new announcements

  • Tax-free personal allowance rises from £11,500 to £11,850; threshold for 40% tax rises from £45,000 to £46,350. Rates and bands for Scottish taxpayers are still to be confirmed by the Scottish Parliament.
  • Employees will not be charged income tax on benefit of charging an electric car at work.
  • Employees with SAYE-related share option schemes will be able to take a 12-month break from saving, up from 6 months now, while on maternity or paternity leave.
  • Abolition of Class 2 National Insurance and reform of Class 4 NIC for self-employed deferred by a year to April 2019 in order to assess impact on contributory benefits.
  • Freezing of VAT registration threshold at £85,000 for two years instead of normal £2,000 increase.
  • ISA investment limit for 2018/19 unchanged at £20,000; Junior ISA limit rises in line with inflation to £4,260.
  • Lifetime Allowance for tax-advantaged pension funds rises from £1m to £1,030,000.
  • Increase in Enterprise Investment Scheme investment limit from £1m to £2m, provided any amount over £1m is invested in one or more knowledge-intensive companies.
  • Capital Gains Tax annual exempt amount rises from £11,300 to £11,700.
  • Annual Tax on Enveloped Dwellings to rise by 3% in line with inflation.

From April 2018: confirmation of previous announcements

  • VAT-registered traders to operate ‘Making Tax Digital for VAT’ from April 2019.
  • Class 4 National Insurance Contributions increases proposed in March 2017 will not take effect.
  • Dividend Allowance, introduced at £5,000 for tax year 2016/17, reduced to £2,000 for 2018/19.

Other significant announcement

  • Allocation of £155m in extra resources to HMRC to fund action on the hidden economy, marketed tax avoidance schemes, enablers of tax fraud, non-compliance and collection of debts 9 months overdue.

The OBR now expects GDP to grow by 1.5% this year, 1.4% in 2018 and 1.3% in 2019 and 2020. It predicts such growth to then pick up to 1.6% by 2022. In addition, government borrowing is set to ‘fall in every year of the forecast’. Borrowing this year will be 2.4% of GDP. It will then fall from £39.5 billion in 2018 to £25.6 billion in 2022/23, reaching ‘its lowest level in 20 years’. Inflation is set to rise to 3% during the final quarter of 2017, and will ‘fall back towards target’ over the next year.

To gain more insight click here for full document of Autumn Budget 2017