The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne delivered his forth Budget for the UK Coalition yesterday, so we thought we'd take a look at the key points to see what's in it for students.
As the Conservative led Coalition Government restructures the UK economy away from the public to the private sector, economic growth remains the main casualty. The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) has slashed it's growth forecast for 2013 to a feeble 0.6%.
Despite the OBR's failure to predict the weakness in the UK economy last year, we have included the OBR's 2013 predictions that economic output will rise to 1.8% in 2014 and will jump up again to 2.3% in time for the 2015 general election. We'll see...
The Chancellor also told a jam-packed and febrile House of Commons that he predicts that the UK Government will have to borrow £114bn this year to keep going. With the dubious benefit of the Government's OBR crystal ball, however, the deficit should fall from 11.4% of the UK's output (GDP) to a forecast 7.4% this year.
Students working their way through college will welcome more tax-free pay as the Chancellor brings forward the promised rise in the personal tax allowance to £10,000 in April 2014.
Despite the UK's eye-watering debts the Chancellor has decided to help out big-business by cutting the rate of Corporation Tax to 20% in 2015. There's also more help for the boss who now will no longer have to pay up to £2000 a year in National Insurance contributions. By making it cheaper to employ people the new measures should create more jobs for new graduates struggling to find work at the moment.
There's also good news for students that drive who won't have to pay the 3p a litre extra fuel tax threatened for September.
The Chancellor also announced more help for the banks, this time in the form of deposit guarantees. The scheme will make it easier for people saving for a house, but can't yet afford the new larger deposits banks are increasingly demanding from new buyers to stay solvent. The news was welcomed by house builders and those listed on the stock market saw the value of their business go up yesterday by 8%.
There was also more good news for property companies who are set to benefit from a £3bn increase in infrastructure spending from 2015/16. Paid for, the Chancellor insists, by cuts in public spending. The NHS and Education will not, say the Government, be directly affected by the cuts.
Oh, nearly forgot, the money the Government fined the banks for fiddling the interest rates will be given to armed forces charities and there's a penny off the price of a pint of beer. Cheers George...
What the Guardian newspaper has to say: Most people will be worse off under George Osborne
How much better off will you be? Try the tax calculator.
Source of key facts: Associaltion of International Accountants
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