In his first and last Autumn Statement on Wednesday November 23, Philip Hammond ditched his predecessor George Osborne's pledge to restore government's finances to a surplus by 2020.
Chancellor had quite a difficult role to play in the after post Brexit uncertainty, and considered in his speech positive factors like relatively steady growth, low unemployment and inflation as well as negative factors such as drop in productivity which makes balancing the books even harder.
Changes announced are small and Just About Managing (JAM) and most significant of them are : rise in the living wage from £7.20 to £7.50 an hour from April 2017, the go ahead to already announced changes in childcare support, scrapping agency letting fees for those who rent as well as changes in pension, currently secured by triple lock. With regards to the last mentioned, Philip Hammond suggests that the triple lock protection will stay however, future pensions will be more considered on the base of what we can really afford rather than the old generation's good deal pension. Phillip Hammond says that the old generation should now feel obliged to help youngsters in many areas which currently seem inaccessible to them like for example owing a property.
In the precarious post Brexit environment, Philip Hammond tries his best to stimulate country's future growth by abandoning plans to run a budget surplus by 2020 and making instead plans to increase Britain's debt by borowing £ 59bn next year, £46.5bn in 2018/19 and £20.9bn in 2020.
Figures put out in the statement in effect to Brexit were criticised by many as unrealistic as it is simply impossible to know the long term effects of exit from the EU. Most agree however that in the short run, Brexit is going to pose many issues which could be all worth while. Hard to speculate on now, but the international politicises of Britain can work well in the long run and can lead to establishment of new, valuable trading links with China and America, so crucial in the success of Brexit.
Lastly, Autumn Statement will be abolished, while the budget will be moved to the autumn from march.
Last Autumn Statement - Your Tax Assistant