The Tory Tax Reform Commission is recommending a £21bn cut in taxes, including scrapping IHT on primary residen-ces and slashing corporation tax levels.Head of the commission Lord Forsyth told an audience at KPMG’s headquarters last week that the proposals are realistic and set in place ref-orms that would result in a “simpler, lower, flatter, fairer and more stable tax system”. Responding to the commission’s report, Shadow Chancellor George Osborne said he hopes the menu of proposals starts a major political debate about making taxes simple, fair and competitive. Osborne repeated his mantra of not promising tax cuts but emphasised the Tory focus on rebalancing the current tax system – on a neutral basis – in the lead-up to a general election. He said such rebalancing would reduce the taxes hitting families while increasing green taxes although he acknowledged concerns that such taxes potentially hit the poorest hardest. Osborne said there was a strong case for a major simplification of business taxes that would then pay for a “significant” reduction in business tax rates. He said he has asked PriceWaterhouseCoopers to conduct a detailed technical study of how proposals on simpler business taxes could be put into practice. Osbourne said more work would be done to assess the potential benefit to Britain’s financial services and pension funds in reducing or abolishing stamp duty on shares. He said: “I believe lower and simpler taxes encourage aspiration and opportunity and help people take more responsibility for their own lives.” However, Liberal Democrat Shadow Chancellor Vince Cable says: “It is utterly irresponsible to present plans for tax cuts without saying who would pay for them.”
John Charcol senior technical director Ray Boulger says lenders should only call redemption penalties exit fees in their literature to avoid confusing consumers. His call comes as the FSA is set to rule on whether lenders unfairly increase their fees during the term of a contract. Boulger says: “The FSA’s requirements could be met by […]
Scottish Widows has signed a deal with FundsNetwork, which will allow Widows retirement accountholders to access over 800 funds.
Edeus managing director Alan Cleary has launched a scathing attack on retention fees, branding them a “web of sin” and insisting they contravene treating customers fairly principles. Cleary says lenders do not have brokers’ best interests at heart and are only out to kill the remortgage market, which could mean considerably less business for brokers […]
The Financial Services Authority has fined Best Advice Mortgage Network £7,000 for poor record keeping. The regulator says the firm did not “record and retain sufficient personal and financial information about customers before recommending a mortgage contract between June 2005 and June 2006”. The FSA says it failed to inform customers that had made a […]
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Fund managers who have helped pay compensation over the collapse of life settlement bond provider Keydata will receive a £12m refund, the Financial Services Compensation Scheme has announced. Keydata’s management has been embroiled in a multi-million-pound legal battle with the FCA since it collapsed in 2009. The total bill for compensation stands at more than […]
With no employer to fall back on, the self-employed are on their own when it comes to retirement saving. Irregular income patterns can make it harder to save regularly into a pension and commit to locking money away until age 55. Those who are building a business may see that as their biggest asset and […]
The FCA has finished implementing the recommendations of the Financial Advice Market Review with the publication today of a policy statement relating to personal recommendations today. The FCA aligned itself with Mifid II last year by mandating that regulated advice must contain a personalised recommendation. In August last year, the FCA published a consultation paper […]