Rishi Sunak delivered a largely surprise-free Budget on Wednesday, with extensions to employment support schemes, the Universal Credit uplift and Stamp Duty holiday confirmed alongside a personal allowance freeze and the anticipated increase to Corporation Tax.
Ahead of the Budget vote on Tuesday and the introduction of the Finance Bill later in the week, we round up the key Budget announcements and other fiscal events to look out for over the coming months and beyond.
- Budget debate concludes (March 9).
- Estimates Day debate (March 10).
- Finance Bill published (March 11).
- Treasury publishes interim findings from its fundamental review of business rates, including a summary of consultation responses (March 23).
- Treasury publishes ‘Tax policies and consultations Spring 2021’ Command Paper (March 23).
- Government’s Stay at Home order ends (March 29).
- Application windows close for the business loan schemes (CBILS, CLBILS, and BBLS), and for mortgage and consumer credit payment holidays (March 31).
- Businesses can apply to use the VAT deferral New Payment Scheme and spread the cost of VAT bills from last year over 11 monthly payments, rather than paying a lump sum by March 31.
- Super-deduction for businesses investing in plant and machinery comes into effect, offering a first-year capital allowance of 130% (April 1).
- Temporary increase in Working Tax Credit ends (April 5).
- Personal allowance and higher rate tax thresholds rise to £12,570 and £50,570 respectively before being frozen until April 2026 (April 6).
- Recovery Loan Scheme opens, providing guarantees to lenders on loans of between £25,000 and £10 million (April 6).
- Target date for re-opening of non-essential retail, personal care premises, leisure facilities, outdoor hospitality, outdoor attractions, and self-contained accommodation (April 12).
- One-off £500 payment for Working Tax Credit recipients to be paid (by April 23).
- New mortgage guarantee scheme opens, offering prospective homeowners the chance to buy a house worth up to £600,000 with a deposit of just 5%.
- Restart Grants are available, with up to £6,000 per premises for non-essential retail firms and up to £18,000 per premises for hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym businesses.
- Fuel and alcohol duty remain frozen for the next year.
- Target date for re-opening of indoor hospitality and entertainment venues, outdoor performances, hotels, small indoor and large outdoor events (May 17).
- Applications for the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) fourth grant close. The grant pays out 80% of average trading profits over three months, up to £7,500. (May 31).
- Queen’s Speech (reportedly tbc for May 18).
- National Infrastructure Bank, headquartered in Leeds, is due to become operational on an interim basis (Spring).
- Government’s target date for full re-opening of the economy (June 21).
- Deadline for businesses that deferred VAT payments from 2020 to opt into the New Payment Scheme (June 21) or agree extra help to pay with HMRC (June 30).
- Stamp Duty holiday begins tapering, with the end of the temporary increase to £500,000 for the Nil Rate Band. The threshold for paying SDLT is £250,000 from July to September (June 30).
- 100% business rates holiday for retail, hospitality and leisure firms expires, with 66% relief available for the next nine months (June 30).
- Community Ownership Fund bidding opens.
- Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme grant reduced to 70%, with employers topping up remaining wages to 80% (July 1).
- Universal Credit minimum income floor suspension expires, following a three-month extension from April (July 31).
- Mortgage and consumer credit payment holidays end (July 31).
- New ‘flexi-job’ apprenticeship scheme opens, permitting apprentices to work for multiple firms across the same sector.
- Application window for the final SEISS grant opens.
- OBR fiscal risks report is due, analysing medium-term risks to public finances and long-term fiscal sustainability.
- Community Renewal Fund awards announced.
- Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme grant reduced to 60%, with employers topping up remaining wages to 80% (August 1).
- HGV Levy suspension extended for a further 12 months (August 1).
- Universal Credit uplift is withdrawn following a six-month extension (September 30).
- Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme closes following multiple extensions, some three months after the government’s June 21 target for full economic re-opening (September 30).
- Temporary 5% VAT rate on food and non-alcoholic drinks, accommodation and attractions ends, with an interim rate of 12.5% applying until next April (September 30).
- Increased payments for apprenticeship hires end, following an increase to £3,000 per hire in April (September 30).
- National Infrastructure Commission report on infrastructure, towns and regeneration due.
- Stamp Duty Land Tax Nil Rate Band returns to £125,000 (October 1).
- Treasury publishes fundamental review of business rates (Autumn).
- Film and TV Production Restart Scheme, which provides financial support to the UK screen production industry, ends (December 31).
- Recovery Loan Scheme closes (subject to review).
- OBR forecast evaluation report is due, assessing the accuracy of its fiscal and economic forecasts.
- Reduced 12.5% VAT rate for hospitality, accommodation and attractions ends (March 31).
- 66% business rates relief ends (March 31).
- Deadline for redemption of vouchers issued under the Green Homes Grant (March 31).
- 2022 Budget.
- New plastic packaging tax introduced, set at £200 per tonne in Rishi Sunak’s first Budget (April 6).
- 95% mortgage guarantee scheme closes.
- Corporation Tax increases to 25%. A small profits rate of 19% on earnings up to £50,000 applies, tapering up to 25% on earnings over £250,000 (April 6).