UK finance minister Hunt to make business tax break permanent – reports

LONDON (Reuters) – British finance minister Jeremy Hunt will reveal a permanent tax break for businesses in his Autumn Statement on Wednesday as part of measures to boost economic growth, The Times and The Financial Times newspapers reported on Tuesday.

The policy, known as full expensing, allows businesses to immediately offset investment in plant and machinery against tax. It is worth around 9 billion pounds ($11.21 billion) a year and had been due to end in 2026.

The Financial Times, citing government officials, said the permanent extension would be Hunt’s flagship reform to boost growth.

Hunt has previously said he wanted to make the tax break permanent when the fiscal position allows.

The Times also reported that Hunt would cut the headline rates of national insurance for around 28 million people.

On the eve of delivering his budget update, Hunt announced Britain’s national minimum wage will increase by 9.8% to 11.44 pounds per hour from April 2024, up from 10.42 pounds.

($1 = 0.8025 pounds)

(Reporting by Urvi Dugar in Bengaluru and Farouq Suleiman in London; Editing by Leslie Adler and Kylie MacLellan)