SME Budget reaction

Small businesses are decidedly underwhelmed by Alistair Darling’s Budget.


Small businesses are decidedly underwhelmed by Alistair Darling’s Budget.

Small businesses are decidedly underwhelmed by Alistair Darling’s Budget.

Joe White, COO of IT company Gandi, says: ‘There were no surprises really. It was important for Darling to manage expectations and keep his forecasts in line with what other people are predicting about the UK and global economy.’

Paul Webb, tax partner at the Robert James Partnership, says: ‘It was a tale of two sides. There were some interesting measures such as continuing to defer tax liabilities until 2010, which will offer business owners some comfort in terms of allowing them to ease their cash flow.’

Webb adds that other positive measures for small businesses include continuing the delay on corporation tax, increases in capital allowance to 40 per cent and support packages to green companies.

He says: ‘To be perfectly honest SMEs will look at the measures and it will be the 50 per cent tax increase which will stick in their minds. It wasn’t a great help.’
 
John Wright, Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) chairman, says: ‘In what has been the most crucial budget in decades, the FSB is disappointed that small businesses have been largely ignored.
 
‘We welcome moves to focus on jobs and job creation for young people, but we are very disappointed that this budget will do nothing for those firms which are doing their best to hold on to their valued employees. A government funded wage subsidy for short-time working would have been a real help but was totally ignored.’
 
In a poll of 122 SMEs conducted by SmallBusiness.co.uk, 27 per cent said they wanted the budget to offer easier access to finance, with 20 per cent saying they wanted to see lower national insurance contributions.
 

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