Posts by Richard Jackson

Life expectancy – slowing down our old age

Life expectancy continues to rise in the UK

A paper published in August by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) casts new light on old age and life expectancy in the UK. Life expectancy has been increasing in the UK for a long time, as our graph shows. In 1980, the average life expectancy at birth was 70.6 years for a man and…

Read More

Interest rates creeping up after nine years

Interest rates on the way says The Bank of England

The Bank of England increased the base interest rate in August to 0.75% – the second increase in 12 months. The Bank’s decision to raise the rate to its highest level in nearly nine and a half years was no great surprise to the investment community. Of more interest to the experts were the comments…

Read More

Record inheritance tax revenues ahead of simplification review

Inheritance tax revenues rise

2017/18 produced record inheritance tax (IHT) receipts according to HMRC data published in July. The latest release of the annual statistics revealed IHT produced £5.228 billion for the Exchequer in 2017/18, an increase of two thirds over just five years. As the graph shows, IHT revenue has been rising rapidly since Treasury receipts hit a…

Read More

Student loan interest rates increase

UK Student loans are set to rise

The rates charged on student loans rose at the start of September. The revised terms for interest on, and repayment of, student loans were published in August, along with the A level results for the year. From 1 September, the main interest rates for Plan 2 loans, taken out by students and recent graduates in…

Read More

Is the LISA’s short life about to end?

The Lisa may soon end following criticism in parliament.

The Lifetime ISA (LISA) may not survive after low uptake by providers and fresh criticisms from parliament. The LISA has been reviewed by the Treasury Select Committee, which was critical of, “its complexity, its perverse incentives, its lack of complementarity with the pension saving landscape and its apparent lack of popularity with the industry and…

Read More

OBR forecasts present need for tax increases in the Budget

Income tax increases may be coming

The long-term outlook for government finances suggests tax increases are inevitable. The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) produces medium-term financial forecasts alongside the Budget and Spring Statement, but that is not its only task. It is also required to take a longer-term view of the public finances, producing a Fiscal Sustainability Report every two years.…

Read More

Residential letting to get more difficult

Tax changes will affect the residential letting market

Draft legislation concerning residential letting, released in July, contains more bad news for those renting out residential property. The Finance Bill 2018/19 draft legislation published just before the summer holidays has confirmed the following measures: From 6 April 2019, the rules for rent-a-room relief (which exempts up to £7,500 a year of income from tax) will…

Read More

Global stock markets prove volatile after the smooth sailing of 2017

Source: LSE   The first six months of 2018 were unpredictable times for investors as global stock markets suffered a sudden bout of volatility. The unpredictability came as a major surprise after the general stability of 2017.  Once the dust had settled there was a mixture of good and bad news. The UK markets were inevitably…

Read More

Is a flat rate scheme coming to pension tax relief?

Pension tax relief

The prospect of a flat rate of tax relief on pension contributions has resurfaced in the national press. The cost of pension relief has been chipped back in recent years, mainly by reducing the annual allowance. However, a report in The Timesin early July suggested the Treasury is looking at flat rate tax relief, which…

Read More

Saudi Arabia: the next emerging market

Suadi Arabia has been named as the next emerging market by a global stock index.

The June 2018 review of constituents for the main Emerging Markets Index has produced a few surprises. The MSCI Emerging Market Index is one of the most important global stock market indices. JP Morgan, the US investment bank, estimates that nearly $1,500 billion is either benchmarked against the index or directly tracks it, so there can…

Read More