03 Mar 2021
Chancellor Rishi Sunak will deliver the 2021 Budget speech today at 12:30pm. We will keep you up to date on the key Budget announcements and supply a full summary, which will appear on our website tomorrow morning.
Speculation is rife that the Chancellor will announce additional support for UK workers and jobs as unemployment sits at a five-year high due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Many believe that the Chancellor will announce details of a £5 billion grant scheme designed to help businesses adversely affected by the pandemic to re-open following the end of the current lockdown in England.
Meanwhile, traineeships are reportedly set to benefit from a £126 million boost, with the Chancellor allegedly set to introduce a new 'flexi-job' apprenticeship in England which will permit apprentices to work with various employers in one sector.
Experts believe that Mr Sunak will also extend the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) until September. The CJRS currently pays up to 80% of employees' wages until the end of June.
In regard to business rates, shop owners could stand to benefit from an extension to the business rates holiday, which is currently set to come to an end on 31 March.
Additionally, the Chancellor may announce a handful of tax increases, including a rise in corporation tax, to help repay the large amounts of public money spent to keep the economy afloat during the pandemic.
Some experts also expect an extension to the stamp duty holiday introduced last year. The government mortgage guarantee scheme will offer 95% mortgages for homes worth up to £600,000.