The Chancellor’s first Autumn Statement was the hot topic of conversation at Rowton Hall Hotel last Thursday evening (November 24th).
The event, a Post Autumn Statement Briefing by Ellis & Co Chartered Accountants and Chartered Financial Planners Illingworth Seddon; was held to give a short overview on the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement and how it may affect those in attendance.
“It’s fair to say that Philip Hammond is not a man renowned for his charisma: ‘safe,’ ‘plodding’ and ‘risk averse’ are some of the kinder adjectives that have been used to describe the new Chancellor, a man apparently nicknamed ‘Spreadsheet Phil’ by his colleagues,” said Peter Way-Rider, Tax Manager at Ellis & Co, who made a presentation during the evening.
“It is to Hammond that the job of steering the UK economy through the Brexit negotiations and beyond has fallen and this was his first chance to communicate his plans to the public.”
There were ‘no real surprises’ in Mr Hammond’s first budget speech since taking office, with most of the key points being in connection with future borrowing requirements post Brexit.
He confirmed the intention to reduce Corporation Tax to 17% by 2020 and increased the main rate of the National Living Wage from £7.20 an hour to £7.50.
In addition there were minor concessions in the area of Universal Credit.
Illingworth Seddon also presented a summary of some important changes we have seen this year in the areas of pension, investment and estate planning.
“The economic numbers don’t look good and there is considerable uncertainty about the next five years, “added Peter.
“But that is not purely down to Brexit: as George Osborne so often stressed, the UK cannot be immune to world events and 2017 promises to be every bit as uncertain as 2016 has been, with President Trump being sworn in and elections in both France and Germany.”