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Budget hailed as boost for business, pensioners and savers

PUBLISHED: 14:34 20 March 2014 | UPDATED: 14:34 20 March 2014

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BUDGET 2014 MEASURES AT A GLANCE

PERSONAL TAX

:: Personal tax allowance to be raised to £10,500 next year; £800 average savings

:: Higher rate threshold for 40p income tax to rise from £41,450 to £41,865 next month and then by further 1% to £42,285 next year

:: Transferable tax allowance for married couples to rise to £1,050

TAX

:: 15% stamp duty on homes worth more than £500,000 bought through companies

:: Inheritance tax waived for emergency services personnel who “give their lives protecting us”

:: VAT waived on fuel for air ambulances and inshore rescue boats

:: Fuel duty rise planned for September cancelled

PENSIONS AND SAVINGS

:: All tax restrictions on pensioners’ access to pension pots removed and tax on cash removed on retirement cut from 55% to 20%

:: Reform of taxation of defined contribution pensions to help 13 million people from March 27

::: Abolition of 10p starting rate of tax on income from savings

ECONOMY

:: GDP growth forecast to be 2.7% this year, then 2.3%, 2.6%, 2.6% and 2.5% in following years - making UK economy £16 billion bigger than predicted.

:: Deficit revised down to 6.6% this year, and forecast to fall in following years before going into surplus of 0.2% in 2018/19

:: Borrowing expected to be £108 billion this year - £12 billion less than forecast

:: Debt revised down to 74.5% of GDP this year; then predicted to peak at 78.7% in 2015/16 and fall to 74.2% by 2018

JOBS

:: OBR forecasts 1.5 million more jobs over the next five years and earnings to grow faster than inflation

:: Welfare cap set at £119 billion for 2015/16, rising to £127 billion by 2018/19, only state pension and cyclical unemployment benefits excluded

ENERGY

:: £7 billion package to cut energy bills includes £18 per ton cap on carbon price support, saving medium-sized manufacturers £50,000 and families £15 a year

:: Compensation scheme for energy intensive industries extended four years to 2019/20; £1 billion to protect manufacturers from cost of green levies

LEISURE

:: Tobacco duty to rise by 2% above inflation

:: Alcohol duty escalator scrapped

:: Duty on spirits and ordinary cider frozen. Beer duty cut by 1p a pint

:: Duty on fixed-odds betting terminals increased to 25%

:: Bingo duty halved to 10%.

:: 20% tax relief for theatre productions

INVESTMENT

:: £270 million guarantee approved for the Mersey Gateway bridge.

:: Support to build 200,000 homes.

:: Additional £140 million made available for repairs and maintenance to flood defences

BUSINESS

:: Business rate discounts and enhanced capital allowances in enterprise zones extended for three more years

:: Research and development tax credit for loss-making small businesses raised from 11% to 14.5%

:: Annual investment allowance doubled to £500,000 and extended to the end of 2015

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