Monthly Archives: March 2016

UK interest rates have been held at 0.5% once again by the Bank of England.

All nine members of the Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) have voted to keep rates at their record low, where they have now been for seven years.

The decision to freeze rates comes amid worries about global growth and uncertainty ahead of the EU referendum.

The Bank said uncertainty in the run-up to the referendum on EU membership – to be held on 23rd June – had hit sterling, and that UK economic growth could slow.

“There appears to be increased uncertainty surrounding the forthcoming referendum,” policymakers said and

“That uncertainty is likely to have been a significant driver of the decline in sterling”, “It may also delay some spending decisions and depress growth of aggregate demand in the near term.”

Limited companies not exempt from 3% Stamp Duty: Budget 2016

In a shock move, a policy statement supporting the 2016 Budget confirmed investors buying residential property inside a limited company tax wrapper will still be hit by the 3% surcharge.

In a bid to sidestep the 3% premium, thousands of landlords have been placing residential property investments into limited company shells since the consultation was announced in the Autumn statement last November.

Today, the government confirmed only properties worth less than £40,000 along with houseboats and caravans will be exempt the surcharge, regardless of tax wrapper.

Chancellor George Osborne said in his speech, larger landlords would not be exempt the extra charge with many previously speculating that landlords with 15 or more properties may be exempt.

However, today’s policy statement quashed all speculation and said: “Companies purchasing residential property will be subject to the higher rates, including the first purchase of a residential property.”