In news this week, we look at concerns over the financial effect of a prospective Brexit on UK SMEs, and other economic headlines this week including the HMRCs latest tax policies and the backlash against it.
Feature of the Week
How much will Brexit affect SME finance? | The Guardian
One of the main concerns over a potential British exit from the EU are the implications this might have on smaller businesses, especially in terms of finance. Being a part of the EU makes the UK more creditworthy. UK borrowers might therefore have to pay a slightly higher price for credit and the availability of external financing for the entire UK economy could be reduced, which would mean a reduced availability of credit for SMEs as well.
New state pension good for self-employed | BM Magazine
Thanks to changes to the state pension, the self-employed are now entitled to up to £155.65 a week compared to a previous maximum entitlement of £119.30 under the previous basic state pension.
Despite this, seven in ten self-employed people are not aware of the new level and are therefore missing out.
Those who reached their state pension age (currently 65 for men and 63 for women) on or before 5 April will continue to receive a state pension under the previous regime.
A major survey question UK small and medium-sized businesses and found that online businesses in France and Spain are significantly outstripping the UK in terms of capitalising on international sales.
A quarter of businesses cited shipping and the associated costs as the top barrier to selling abroad while customs and duties were the second most cited concern.
HMRC plans for quarterly tax returns cause anger | The Guardian
Intended plans for quarterly tax returns could create a significant administrative and financial burden for SMEs, according to the FSB.
In a report published on Tuesday 5 April, the ABAB predicted that plans announced by chancellor George Osborne to introduce a new digital tax system for the self-employed – including mandatory quarterly updates – would create a significant added burden in terms of accounting records and costs.
National insurance changes encourage staff investment | BM Magazine
There has been a rise in the Annual Employment Allowance which has provided a boost for small and start-up businesses who now have less National Insurance to pay. This in turn has led to increased confidence in hiring new staff.
In addition to this, the Annual Employment Allowance has now risen from £2,000 to £3,000.