32: The Autumn Statement

 

After a whopping 109 episodes, this is Jo's final episode as host of the 'On the Spot' podcast! What an incredible achievement.

Last week, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt revealed his Autumn Statement in the House of Commons. He unveiled tax rises and spending cuts worth billions of pounds, intended to fix the UK's struggling finances.

There was some good news for high street retailers with the business rates revaluation. Retailers have long argued that they carry a disproportionate share of the burden of business rates, a tax on commercial property (based on rental value) that penalised high street retailers and advantaged e-commerce companies, as shoppers switched to buying online in recent years.

The UK's unemployment rate rose to 3.6% in the three months leading up to September, up from 3.5% in the previous period, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics. There are 330k people less in work now than in pre-pandemic times, this is largely in part down to an increase in the number of people unable to work due citing long-term health issues.

The Bank of England has warned that unemployment will nearly double by 2025 as the UK goes through a tough recession. The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) also released forecasts warning that real disposable incomes would drop by 7.1% over the next two years, the biggest fall in living memory...

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