According to information from the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) property prices in the UK are due to rise in 2010 driven by low borrowing costs and the shortage of homes. Property values are due to rise by five percent and mortgage costs will cheapen as the Bank of England retains a its record low 0.5 percent key interest rate. CEBR have reduced their property price forecast from 6 percent after the tax on home purchases rose and cold weather damped demand for property. Average mortgage interest rates are expected to drop by around one percent by the start of 2011.
US based billionaire investor Warren Buffett, has backed Bank of England Governor Mervyn Jones previous comments by stating that said he doesn’t envy the winner of the UK general election, who will be faced with the need to make “politically very unpopular” decisions to cut the deficit. Speaking after the annual shareholder meeting of Berkshire Hathaway before a crowd of 40,000 , Mr Buffett warned the next occupant of No 10 to fear the bond market, which could turn against the UK if public spending is not brought back into balance over the long term.
Buffet’s comments regarding the UK’s current financial plight echoes previous statements made about growing government debt across the Western world. The debt has been incurred as a result of the economic stimulus measures put in place to prevent a much worse recession after the financial panic of 2008.
It has been reported that the collective wealth of the UKs 1,000 richest people increased by 30 per cent in 2009, largely due to the efforts of London-based steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal. Claiming the top spot for the sixth consecutive year Mittal seen his fortune double from £10,800 million to £22,450 million in the wake of the recovery of the steel industry worldwide.
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich remains second on the list, whilst adding a mere £400 million to his stack of £7,400 million.
The Duke of Westminster, retains his place as the wealthiest UK born member of the list saw his mainly property based fortune increase to £6,750 million.
According to a recent survey, most of the UK’s small companies feel that the current tax system it too complex, and would like to see it simplified,
Two thousand small and medium sized UK enterprises (SMEs) took part in the survey that found that 77% participating feel that the current system is preventing them from taking advantage of tax benefits and breaks, while
60% were found to be unaware what entitlements they may be suitable for.
While many experts see SMEs as the engine for economic recovery and a key battleground in the upcoming election, many small businesses find the complexity of the tax system frustrating, with almost three quarters with the impression that the tax system was actually acting as a barrier for start-ups. [Read more…]