July 2, 2022

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Fresh Updates From Around The World.

Budget 2021 news LATEST: Rishi Sunak to give self-employed £7.5K grants & extend furlough & stamp duty holiday

RISHI Sunak is to reveal extra help for 600,000 self employed people with grants of up to £7,500 and furlough is to be extended until September.

The Chancellor is also set to extend the stamp duty holiday as house prices rocketed 6.9 per cent year-on-year last month to a record high of £231,061 last month, new data shows.

Robert Gardner of Nationwide told the Telegraph: “This increase is a surprise. It seemed more likely that annual price growth would soften further ahead of the end of the stamp duty holiday, which prompted many people considering a house move to bring forward their purchase.”

The Chancellor will reveal the country’s spending plan today – the first since coronavirus‘ devastating impact on the economy became clear and the first since the Brexit transition period came to an end.

The Budget is due to take place at around 12.30pm, once Prime Minster’s Questions ends in the House of Commons.

  • 3MILLION WORKERS NOT ELIGIBLE FOR FIRST THREE GRANTS

    Up to three million self-employed workers were not eligible for the first three grants.

    Self-employed workers who are company directors or run their businesses as limited companies were also unable to apply.

    Rishi Sunak, The Chancellor of the Exchequer, said: “Our Covid support schemes have been a lifeline to millions, protecting jobs and incomes across the UK.

    “There’s now light at the end of the tunnel with a roadmap for reopening, so it’s only right that we continue to help business and individuals through the challenging months ahead – and beyond.”

  • Mr Sunak also will reveal in tomorrow’s Budget:

    • Furlough will be extended right through until September – with 80 per cent of wages paid
    • But employers will have to cough up more cash from July – with 10% in July and 20% in August and September towards the hours their staff do not work
    • The self-employed will get a fourth grant of up to £7,500 and a fifth grant will come within months to get firms through until summer
  • SELF EMPLOYED BRITS TO GET EXTRA HELP

    Rishi Sunak will today reveal extra help for 600,000 self employed Brits who have been shut out of Government support during the pandemic.

    The Chancellor will reveal that hundreds of thousands of people, many of whom became self-employed in 2019-20, will now be able to claim direct cash grants under the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.

    Anyone who filled in a tax return in January – or is due to – will be able to get the extra help.

    It means they will be able to access the £7,500 in extra help that others have been able to claim.

  • FURLOUGH TO BE EXTENDED UNTIL END OF SEPTEMBER

    The furlough scheme will today be extended until the end of September.

    Rishi Sunak’s Budget vow means millions will have been paid to stay at home for a gruelling 17 months.

    Employers will be asked to start chipping in from July in the hope of avoiding mass lay-offs.

    The Chancellor’s vow “to do whatever it takes” to protect jobs will add £5billion a month to the pandemic’s £280billion support bill.

    In July, business bosses will be expected to contribute ten per cent of the cost, increasing to 20 per cent in August and September, as the economy reopens.

  • EXPLAINER – HOW DOES THE STAMP DUTY HOLIDAY HELP THE ECONOMY?

    The Treasury announced the stamp duty holiday in a bid to breathe life into the property market after it effectively froze during the first lockdown with viewings, sales and moves suspended.

    Experts said a stamp duty holiday would encourage more home owners to move, helping to kickstart economic activity in other sectors.

    Recent data from HMRC shows stamp duty receipts hit £6.7billion by the end of January.

    This means the last four months’ receipts are at 82% of normal levels in comparison to last year’s levels despite the tax holiday.

    This could mean that only small changes may be needed in the Budget to get tax revenue from stamp duty back on track.

  • BUSINESS CHIEFS WELCOME FURLOUGH EXTENSION

    The CBI’s chief economist Rain Newton-Smith said extending the furlough scheme will keep “millions more in work and give businesses the chance to catch their breath”.

    She added: “The furlough scheme has been a stand-out success.

    “It’s common sense to keep the scheme going while business resilience remains fragile.”

  • £400BN BLACK HOLE

    Rishi Sunak is staring at a £400billion black hole.

    In tomorrow’s Budget he will set out “a three-point plan to protect jobs” but also give a reality check over the dire economic situation due to the pandemic.

    The Treasury said today that the Budget will focus on “support, honesty and building the future economy”.

  • FURLOUGH EXTENSION

    The furlough scheme will today be extended until the end of September.

    Rishi Sunak’s Budget vow means millions will have been paid to stay at home for a gruelling 17 months.

  • WHEN IS THE BUDGET 2021?

    The Budget will be announced tomorrow, Wednesday March 3, by Chancellor Rishi Sunak.

    It is scheduled on the parliament website to take place after the Prime Minister’s Questions.

    PMQs usually lasts around half an hour so the Budget will start just after 12.30pm.

  • STURGEON FACING DEMANDS TO RESIGN

    Nicola Sturgeon is facing pressure to resign over her handling of the Alex Salmond sexual harassment case.

    The Scottish Conservatives said they would table a confidence vote in the SNP leader after the documents were published on the eve of her appearance at a hearing into the row over allegations levelled at her predecessor. 

    They showed that the First Minister and the SNP administration knew efforts to resist a judicial review brought by Mr Salmond in 2018 over the handling of complaints against him – over which he was exonerated – were likely to fail.

  • EXPLAINER – WHAT IS THE BUDGET?

    The Budget will be held on Wednesday March 3, 2021. The government confirmed the date in December 2020.

    It is scheduled on the parliament website to take place after the Prime Minister’s Questions.

    PMQs usually lasts around half an hour so the Budget will start just after 12.30pm.

    It may be later if PMQs overruns and time is often given to allow MPs to enter the House of Commons chambers.

    There is also a short break as the Budget is traditionally chaired by the principal Deputy Speaker rather than the Speaker of the House of Commons.

  • FREE TRADE DEAL WITH CHINA

    Boris Johnson declared “I am a Sinophile” as he opened the door to a new free trade deal with China.

    In an interview with The Sun, the Prime Minister spoke of his love of the Oriental superpower and said any deal would be difficult  – but did not rule one out.

    The warm words will stun MPs given relations with Beijing are at a modern low over Hong Kong, human rights and the Covid outbreak.

    Mr Johnson said loving a country’s history and culture was not the same as supporting its government and he insisted he “disagreed vehemently” with many of Beijing’s actions.

    But asked if he could see a free trade deal with China during his premiership, the PM replied: “We want to expand UK trade around the world.”

  • BUDGET 2021: BEER DUTY EXPECTED TO BE FROZEN TO HELP PUBS POST LOCKDOWN

    Beer duty is expected to be frozen to give pubs a flying start when lockdown is lifted.

    Tory colleagues have urged the Chancellor to slash 2p off the price of a pint.

    But sources say he will resist that but consider higher rates on supermarket booze.

    Conservative MP Jane Stevenson said: “Landlords have gone above and beyond. A cut in beer duty would be warmly welcomed.

  • GOVERNMENT REFUSES TO SAY IF MPS TO BE GIVEN VOTE ON AID CUT

    James Cleverly, foreign office minister, has refused to say whether MPs will be given a vote on a multi-billion pound cut to the UK’s aid budget after he was grilled by Tories.

    The row follows the government’s decision to renege on a manifesto commitment to maintain overseas aid spending at 0.7 per cent of national income, cutting the budget to 0.5 per cent – around £4bn per year.

  • WILL THE STAMP DUTY HOLIDAY BE EXTENDED?

    Mr Sunak is expected to make an announcement on the stamp duty holiday in the Budget on March 3.

    Mr Sunak has previously said to be reluctant as he looks for ways to pay the huge Covid bill, which was at nearly £300billion in January.

    Although the nine-month stamp duty holiday may have sparked a mini-boom in the housing market, it has cost taxpayers an estimated £3.3billion.

    Buyers looking to take advantage of the scheme before the deadline may well have missed their opportunity to get their sale completed in time.

    Another industry expert warned in early November that half of house sales agreed from then will miss the stamp duty discount deadline.

  • SUPPORT FOR STRUGGLING BRITS

    Rishi Sunak will support struggling Brits with the “full measure of our fiscal firepower” at tomorrow’s Budget – but warn the time is approaching to “begin fixing the public finances.”

    The Chancellor will vow to use every tool in his box “to protect the jobs and livelihoods of the British people” – including months more furlough and extra Universal Credit.

    But with the nation’s coffers reeling from the Covid crisis, Mr Sunak is staring at £400 billion blackhole on the eve of his second Budget.

    Tomorrow lunchtime the chief bean counter will set out “a three-point plan to protect jobs” – but also give the nation a reality check over the dire economic situation left in the wake of the pandemic.

  • WHAT IS THE BUDGET?

    The Budget is when the government outlines its plans for tax hikes, cuts and things like changes to the minimum wage.

    It’s different to the Spending Review, which sets out how much public cash will go towards funding certain departments, devolved government’s and services, such as the NHS.

    The Budget is read out in the House of Commons by the Chancellor of the Exchequer. It will be Rishi Sunak’s second Budget as Chancellor.

    Mr Sunak’s first one in March last year has been dubbed the “coronavirus Budget” after it focused on supporting Brits financially through the crisis, rather than the government’s “levelling up” agenda as promised in the 2019 general election.

    Normally, the Budget is held once a year but the unprecedented circumstances of the pandemic in 2020 saw Mr Sunak give a “mini-budget” in the Commons on July 8.

  • WHEN IS RISHI SUNAK’S PRESS CONFERENCE?

    Rishi Sunak will give a press conference at 5pm on Wednesday after delivering his Budget to the nation.

    The Chancellor revealed he will take questions from the public and the press after his statement in the House of Commons, which usually takes place at around 12.30pm.

    He is expected to give the nation an update on the latest finances, after the Treasury has spent billions trying to keep the economy afloat this year through the pandemic.

  • RISHI ECO PLEA

    Rishi Sunak must use tomorrow’s Budget to create 250,000 green apprenticeships, eco-campaigners have urged.

    Friends of the Earth said the Chancellor could tackle both climate change and soaring youth unemployment in one “double whammy”.

    The Chancellor is under pressure to use his last Budget before the COP26 climate change conference to push a raft of eco-changes through.

    The charity calls for a green apprenticeship programme to be run alongside other schemes from the DWP, Department for Education and Treasury.

    Denis Fernando, climate campaigner at Friends of the Earth, said it would “prevent a new wave of youth unemployment while helping the UK towards a more climate-friendly future.”

  • EXPLAINER – WHAT IS THE RED BUDGET BOX?

    The red box, which carries the Budget speech from No.11 to the House of Commons, is often held up outside 11 Downing Street by the Chancellor.

    The briefcase has been used for more than 150 years with the first box being made for William Gladstone in 1860.

    Gladstone’s box was lined with black satin and covered with scarlet leather.

    Parliament explains: “The word Budget comes from an old French word ‘bougette’ meaning little bag.

    “It was customary to bring the statement on financial policy to the House of Commons in a leather bag.

    “The modern equivalent of the bag is the red despatch box or Budget box.”

  • WHAT IS EXPECTED IN THE BUDGET?

  • EXPLAINER – HOW MUCH DID THE GOVERNMENT BORROW IN 2020?

    The Government borrowed a staggering £400billion over the past year – eight times more than in 2019.

    Economist Liam Halligan wrote in The Sun in February 2021: “The pandemic has caused Britain’s deepest economic downturn in three centuries.

    “Our locked-down economy has… struggled to generate tax.

    “That has opened a vast hole in the public finances, with this year’s multi-billion-pound deficit adding to our already huge national debt.”

    Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said Mr Sunak had acknowledged the country could not “go on spending money forever”.

  • CASH IN

    Rishi Sunak is almost certain to extend furlough in tomorrow’s Budget as Boris Johnson vows to “unleash growth”

    The Chancellor is expected to include a fourth furlough scheme extension in his public economic proposals tomorrow – in a bid to continue keeping workers afloat during the pandemic.

    Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng has signalled that Chancellor will announce the extension during his public announcement of the Budget on Wednesday.

    Mr Kwarteng told BBC Breakfast: “I think the Chancellor has already indicated that we will be extending furlough.

    “I think that has been part of a public announcement. I think there will be other measures that we will see tomorrow.”

  • EXPLAINER – WHERE DOES THE GOVERNMENT BORROW MONEY FROM?

    The government borrows money by selling bonds, explains the BBC.

    Public finances have been battered by the coronavirus pandemic since it gripped the UK from early 2020.

    The Government has been handing out huge sums of money to businesses and employees to prevent millions of people winding up unemployed.

    The cost of the Chancellor’s furlough scheme – which pays furloughed staff 80 per cent of their wages up to £2,500 a month – is £14billion a month, according to the Office for Budget Responsibility. Raising taxes are one way to boost coffers.

  • EXPLAINER – WHAT IS THE BUDGET?

    The Budget will be held on Wednesday March 3, 2021. The government confirmed the date in December 2020.

    It is scheduled on the parliament website to take place after the Prime Minister’s Questions.

    PMQs usually lasts around half an hour so the Budget will start just after 12.30pm.

    It may be later if PMQs overruns and time is often given to allow MPs to enter the House of Commons chambers.

    There is also a short break as the Budget is traditionally chaired by the principal Deputy Speaker rather than the Speaker of the House of Commons.