The Spring Budget has been around forever. Well, maybe not forever, but so long that it’s virtually impossible to get a definitive date on the first one. According to one website*, the phrase “seems to have been first applied to a statement of government revenue and expenditure in 1733”.
If that’s right, then for 284 years now, the Chancellor of the Exchequer has been standing up in Parliament in March and delivering his budget statement for the next financial year.
Not anymore. Next month’s budget, which will take place on Wednesday, March 8, will be the last one to take place in Spring.
Chancellor Philip Hammond says that “no other major economy makes hundreds of tax changes twice a year” so there’s no reason we should either, and has opted to change the main budget day from March to sometime in the Autumn.
If that’s not confusing enough, then after Autumn’s second full budget of 2017, March 2018 will see the first Spring Statement, in which the government “retains the option to make changes to fiscal policy if the economic circumstances require it”.
Whatever your thoughts on changing a centuries-old British tradition, you can be sure of one thing: we will be right on top of any changes that affect you directly.
There’s a possibility that Mr Hammond will announce some changes to flat rate VAT on March 8, and if so, you can be sure that we will be in touch with all our VAT-registered clients whom it might affect.
If you’d like to raise any issues with us before then, or if there’s anything else we can help you with, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Email Jo (firstname.lastname@example.org), Ben (email@example.com) or Peter (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we’ll get back to you.