Q – When is a Budget not a Budget?
A – When it is a Fiscal Event!
The key takeaways from the Chancellor’s statement that are likely to impact your agency are:
On employment and tax, the Chancellor confirmed the reversal of the planned National Insurance rise. This will reduce your overall employment costs and may require you to reassess your budget and forecasts, if you had already dialed this expected increase in.
He also announced the bringing forward of the planned cut in income tax, from 20p to 19p, to this April, as well as abolishing the 45p income tax rate.
On Company Taxation, he canceled the planned rise of Corporation Tax which now stays at 19%, instead of a rise to 25% planned for April 23 for those agencies whose profits exceed£ 50,000.
On business investment, he maintained the £1 m threshold for the Annual Investment Allowance, which had been due to be cut. Whilst this does give 100% tax relief to businesses on their plant and machinery investments, it is less likely to benefit an agency style business, please discuss any equipment investments with your MAP contact.
Whilst not a direct business change, Stamp Duty was cut by doubling the threshold to £250,000 and increasing thresholds for first-time buyers. This is likely to see the housing market accelerate, and with the increased interest rates announced yesterday by the Bank of England taking interest rates up by 0.5 percentage points to 2.25%, then this is set to make mortgages more expensive and so could easily lead to further wage inflation pressures within your business.
There are also changes from April to venture capital schemes, with an increase in Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme limits, and company share option plan reforms. But as always the devil will be in the details here.
One area that has had many agency owners confused over the last few years is that of IR35.
The chancellor revealed he will repeal the 2017 and 2021 changes to IR35 off-payroll working rules, which may affect how you are contractually engaged by your clients, and how you may resource projects.
From April workers providing their services via an intermediary will again be responsible for determining their employment status and paying the right tax and National Insurance.
Depending on the sector you serve, whether your agency is deemed an intermediary may affect this.
If there are any specific questions that arise from the budget that wasn’t a budget, then please talk to your usual MAP contact.