The Great Debate UK

Budget not as generous as it first appears

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Julie Meyer-Julie Meyer is CEO of Ariadne Capital, a technology investment and advisory firm backing entrepreneurs in media, moble Internet and communications. The opinions expressed are her own.-

I recently spoke at an IBM event alongside former chancellor Norman Lamont about the issues that face entrepreneurs and how we can turbo-charge these value creators to help rebuild the country’s wealth.

As I digest Wednesday’s budget and what it holds for entrepreneurs, I’m thinking back to that night and it convinced me not to be too impressed with what at first looks like it could be a generous budget.

At a simplistic level, it splits down into taxes and funding. It doesn’t get talked about much, possibly because it’s so dull, but employers’ National Insurance is one of the most onerous taxes on business. It’s ironic that entrepreneurs are taxed for paying salaries when you think about it.

from UK News:

Budget for votes riskily delays UK debt pain

BRITAIN-BUDGET/-- The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own --

Alistair Darling promised no election "giveaways" and in one sense he delivered. The UK finance minister's budget is about not giving away the election. It might have been worse -- if Darling had acceded to his boss Gordon Brown's even more populist instincts. But there are vote-seeking swipes at high earners and banks, as well as a crowd-pleasing but misguided tax cut to first-time house-buyers. The UK's budget-balancing pain is being postponed and concealed. And that's risky.

Darling’s “lame-duck” budget

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Mark Bolsom- Mark Bolsom is the Head of the UK Trading Desk at Travelex, the world’s largest non-bank FX payments specialistThe opinions expressed are his own. He will participate in a Reuters Budget live blog at noon GMT on Wednesday, March 24, 2010. Please tune in and join the discussion. -

While the UK’s financial media has billed the 2010 budget as Chancellor Alistair Darling’s most important – due to their assumption it will be his last – it seems that the financial markets have taken a more relaxed view, feeling its importance has been somewhat overstated by the media.

Budget? A fudge-it, more like

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Claer Barrett- Claer Barrett is associate editor of the Investors Chronicle. The opinions expressed are her own. She will participate in a Reuters Budget live blog at noon GMT on Wednesday, March 24, 2010. Please tune in and join the discussion.

Covering the budget is usually an exciting time for a personal finance publication like the Investors Chronicle – but this year, the adrenaline has been replaced by apathy.

Unified funding required to stimulate innovation

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Danny-Wootton-226x300-Danny Wootton is UK Innovation Director at Logica. The opinions expressed are his own. He will participate in a Reuters Budget live blog at noon GMT on Wednesday, March 24, 2010. Please tune in and join the discussion. -

It is pretty well accepted that budget cuts in public spending are inevitable, but it is important that a plan to effectively use the funding that will be available to stimulate the economy and drive innovation forward is developed.

2010 Budget: Time to face the music

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EdwardCroft- Edward Croft is CEO of Stockopedia, a UK-based website which aggregates research, commentary and analysis for investors and offers social networking opportunities. The opinions expressed are his own. He will participate in a Reuters Budget live blog at noon GMT on Wednesday, March 24, 2010. Please tune in and join the discussion. -

In his recent ‘New Economic Model’ speech,  Shadow Chancellor George Osborne rightly emphasised the need to restore a savings culture in this country. Investment to GDP is the lowest of any G7 country.

Are the markets right to fear a hung parliament?

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-David Kuo is director at The Motley Fool. The opinions expressed are his own -

There is a well-trodden saying that markets hate uncertainty. Elections are inevitably uncertain, so until the votes in the next election are counted we cannot be certain which party will govern the UK.

Currently, there are suggestions that no single party may get sufficient votes to form the next government outright. It is true that the Conservatives have a strong lead over its rivals. However, with a first-past-the post voting system, it only takes a small swing away from the Conservatives to change the complexion of the next parliament.

from UK News:

Has Alistair Darling done enough to revive Labour’s electoral hopes?

So how was it for you?

Chancellor Alistair Darling threw the dice in his pre-budget report in an attempt to bolster Labour's chances of winning the general election in 2010.

From hitting bankers with a one-off bonus tax to lowering bingo duty, Darling played to the Labour heartlands, while hoping to win back voters who have been telling pollsters that they are done with Gordon Brown.

Pre-budget report should simplify tax affairs for high earners

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Julia Whittle_PSFM - Hi Res Colour Mar 06-Julia Whittle is principal and head of international, Punter Southall Financial Management. She will participate in a Reuters pre-budget live blog on Dec. 9, at 12 p.m. British time. The opinions expressed are her own.-

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The attack on high earners has probably not reached a pinnacle and those earning above £100,000 have reason to be nervous in this current climate. The Pre-Budget statement so close to an election shouldn’t produce anything too drastic as there is little time to implement anything radical or complicated. However an attempt at some “vote winners” is a distinct possibility.

Darling should take bold action in aid of UK firms

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clip_image002- Nick James is founder of freshbusinessthinking.com, an online business resource for entrepreneurs. He will participate in a Reuters pre-budget live blog on Dec. 9, at 12 p.m. British time. The opinions expressed are his own. -

The Pre-Budget Report was introduced by Gordon Brown in 1997 when he was Chancellor, and this Wednesday’s pre-Budget report will be delivered by his successor Chancellor Alistair Darling.

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