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Jeremy Hunt Announces Largest Income Tax Rise in 50 Years

Vicky Parry 10th Oct 2023 2 Comments

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Rishi Sunak’s government have this week announced an increase in income tax to take effect next year. This “stealth tax” is seen as a huge knock to an already struggling United Kingdom.

New stats from Resolution Foundation estimate the government will net £40 billion a year by 2027-28 – dramatically more than the original £8 billion a year it was meant to rake in at its peak. Higher inflation typically equals higher wages, which will push more people into the next tax bracket. Had income tax bands been linked to inflation, rather than frozen, we’d have seen a sizeable leap in the amount people could earn each year before hitting the next tax bracket. On top of the frozen allowances, the government reduced the threshold for additional rate tax, dragging more people into the top rate of tax.

MoneyMagpie founder Jasmine Birtles has said, “This is what people like me have been warning about for the last couple of years. These ’stealth taxes’ creep up on workers and eat into their income. The already struggling working people are about to suffer an even further drop and we only have the government to blame”.

Head of personal finance at AJ Bell Laura Suter has said: “These latest figures highlight the staggering impact that higher inflation will have on the amount of tax the nation is paying. The government’s decision to freeze the income tax thresholds at a time when inflation has gone off like a runaway train has boosted government coffers – but at a large cost for most UK households.

 “While Jeremy Hunt will be rejoicing at the boost to his budget, it’s costing households at a time when their budgets are already stretched. AJ Bell calculations show that someone earning £50,000 a year will pay an extra £9,000 in tax across the six years of the threshold freeze, when compared to if the tax thresholds had increased with inflation. Had the government instead increased the headline level rate of taxation, rather than implementing a tax hike by stealth, the basic rate of tax would need to have risen to an astonishing 23.5% from last tax year to generate the same total tax bill for a £50,000 earner. The tax hike for middle-earners is particularly acute because they are vulnerable to the fiscal drag effect pulling them into a higher tax band.  

Tax the Poor to Feed the Rich

This has come at a time that the government is discussing scrapping inheritance tax. Jasmine says: “The government has leaked the idea that they might scrap Inheritance Tax. This only affects less than 4% of estates so it seems to me to be a wasted opportunity. A better suggestion would be to cut income tax, across all bands, as that would affect all workers, would help people cope with the cost of living and, paradoxically, would increase the tax take. Any time income tax has been cut it has actually increased the tax that came into the nation’s coffers because it has increased productivity. When people know that they can keep more of their money they tend to be encouraged to work and produce more. It also encourages those in their fifties and sixties to continue working rather than give up as they see more and more of their salary disappear in taxes.”
“It’s time for the government to be bold, go for growth and cut income tax across the board.”
Have your say in the comments below: Do you think that the freezing of the tax bands is a good move by the government? Or does it feel like a further loss of income that could drive you deeper into financial turmoil?
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Dennis Hatch
Dennis Hatch
8 months ago

must better to increase personal allowence then most tax payers will benefit
this is probaly to easy for our politicans to understand

john hanna
john hanna
8 months ago

The Government printed the money causing inflation and now taxes us on the increase in income needed to cope with it. It is called THEFT

Jasmine Birtles

Your money-making expert. Financial journalist, TV and radio personality.

Jasmine Birtles

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