Freeze on tax thresholds on budget agenda

20 October 2017

It has been reported that the Chancellor of the Exchequer is considering announcing a freeze on tax thresholds in next month’s budget as he looks to fill an £8bn hole in the public finances.

According to a report from the Financial Times the proposal emerged after photographers in Downing Street snapped an “unknown” politician or official entering 11 Downing Street, the chancellor’s residence, with a partly covered document discussing options for freezing the points at which people start to pay money to the government.

In May this year the Conservative manifesto confirmed their pledge that by 2020, the increase to the personal allowance to £12,500 and the higher rate income tax threshold to £50,000 will still happen under a conservative government.

The Financial Times article says that the Chancellor could still honour both promises by committing to meet the 2020 manifesto pledges but then to pre-announce a freeze thereafter until the end of the parliament in 2022. Apparently the Treasury declined to comment.

CIPP comment

Government will publish its next Budget on Wednesday 22 November 2017. The Policy team will as usual be providing coverage via twitter throughout Philip Hammond’s speech so be sure to tune in on the day #AutumnBudget2017. And we will also provide our concise summary of relevant announcements after the event which will be published on the news page of our website.