Analysis of the projected outcomes of the government’s tax policies show an expected increase to the number of higher rate personal taxpayers, with the corporate tax yield expected to grow substantially.
The default policy for income tax has generally been to increase thresholds in line with inflation. This is currently not happening, in particular for the personal allowance and the basic rate band, which are frozen at 2021/22 levels until 2027/28. The latest costing of these two threshold measures will mean:
· Additional tax receipts of £13.1 billion for 2023/24, with over £20 billion in additional receipts for each of the four following years.
· Some 2.2 million taxpayers having to pay tax for 2023/24 who would not otherwise have had to do so, with an extra 1.3 million having to pay higher rate tax.
The exception to the frozen rule is the additional rate threshold, which was cut from 2023/24, pushing more taxpayers into that higher bracket. Not surprisingly, income tax now accounts for 28% of the government’s tax take, up 2% from a few years ago.
The VAT registration threshold has stayed at £85,000 since April 2017, so it should come as no surprise that there are now around 300,000 registrations annually, although a disproportionate number of traders are avoiding registration by keeping turnover just below £85,000.
The government’s yield from corporation tax was just over 8% in 2021/22, but the new main rate of 25% means this is expected to increase to about 10%. In actual figures, this is an increase from £68 billion to £112 billion.
Although there are around 1.5 million SMEs, they only contribute 45% of the total collected corporation tax. The other 55% comes from 18,000 large companies.
By 2027/28, the tax burden is forecast to reach a post-war high of 37.7% of GDP, with the highest ratio of corporation tax receipts to GDP since this tax was introduced nearly 60 years ago. Keeping on top of tax planning and how businesses and individuals can minimise their tax burden is more important than ever.
The Office for Budget Responsibility’s detailed economic and fiscal outlook can be found here.