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Budget 2008 - Previously announced

Much of what will be included in this year’s Finance Bill was known long before the Chancellor stood up to make his Budget speech. The main items of relevance to businesses are summarised here, with links to earlier postings:-

  • Corporation Tax – from 1 April 2008 the main rate will be reduced from 30% to 28% and the small companies’ rate increased from 20% to 21%. 
  • Homes abroad owned through a company – removal of a benefit in kind tax charge where the company is owned by individuals and the sole activity of the company is to hold an overseas property for occupation by the individuals and/or letting. 
  • Loss Relief – restriction of loss relief for interest payments made on certain qualifying loans in a partnership or a small company. Effective from 9 October 2007 this measure tackles a tax avoidance scheme which sought to advance the time at which relief could be claimed.
  • CGT reform for individuals & trusts (not for companies) – abolition of indexation allowances and taper relief, and introduction of a flat rate of 18%, (subject to new entrepreneurs’ relief) from 6 April 2008.
  • Research & Development – extension of SME tax relief schemes to include mid-sized companies with fewer than 500 employees.
  • Company gains on life policies – to be brought within the loan relationship legislation.
  • Capital Allowances – a range of new measures, including the reduction of annual writing down allowances to 20%, introduction of an Annual Investment Allowance of £50,000 and the reduction in the rate of allowances available for integral fixtures.
  • Leased plant & machinery – changes to bring the proceeds of sale from finance leaseback arrangement into charge to tax, and other anti-avoidance changes to long funding lease rules.



Date: 12th March, 2008
Author: Rachel Haddow


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