Compared to last year’s budget, where the Chancellor set out ambitious targets for the construction industry and large scale plans to improve to the UK’s infrastructure, this year’s version feels modest in scope - but that’s hardly surprising, given what’s been happening over the last twelve months with the pandemic. For tradespeople, the main takeaways from Rishi Sunak’s announcement include further measures to protect jobs, income and encourage training. Overall, there were no significant changes to tax, apart from Corporations with profits of over £250,000.Back to Insights
What did the budget say about financial help for businesses?
- The furlough scheme, which has helped employers pay the wages of 9 million employees across the UK for almost a year now, will be extended until the end of September 2021. Employers will be asked to contribute 10% towards their employees’ wages in July and 20% in August and September.
- For the self-employed, there will be two more SEISS grants. The first can be claimed in April, the second in July. The scope of the grant is expanding to cover an extra 600,000 people who were not able to claim previously. All those who have already filed their tax return for 2019 - 2020 will now be eligible to apply for help through the scheme.
- The Bounce Back Loan (BBL) and Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) will come to an end in March 2021. To replace this, a new government-backed loan scheme will be launched to help businesses ride the storm. This will be available until the end of the year and businesses can apply for loans of between £25,000 and £10m.
What did the budget say about training?
- Apprenticeships are being highlighted to help retrain those out of work and tackle the growing skills gap. To attract a larger number of participating businesses, the amount paid to employers who take on an apprentice between April and September 2021 will be increased from £1,500 to £3,000 per apprentice.
- An additional £126 million is being set aside to provide 40,000 more traineeships in England for 16-24 years old. Traineeships provide high quality work placements and training for the youngest in the jobs market.
What did the budget say about tax?
- National insurance, income tax or VAT will not be raised.
- Personal tax thresholds will be frozen, remaining at £12,750 until 2026. The higher-rate threshold will increase to £50,270.
- The rate of corporation tax will to 25% for businesses with profits of more than £250,00o in April 2023. Companies with profits of less than £50,000 will remain at 19%.