Updated: 18:29 EDT

Kwasi Kwarteng portrayed his package as a tax-cutting mini-Budget - but pressed ahead with a bombshell tax raid sneaked in by his predecessor Rishi Sunak. The extra money raised through the freeze will dwarf cuts in the basic and higher tax rates. In a little-noticed measure in Sunak's Budget in March last year, the amount at which people begin paying tax was frozen at the 2021/22 level of £12,570.

A stamp duty cut was announced today by Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng but home buyers hoping for a major overhaul will have been left disappointed.

Homebuyers are celebrating after Kwarteng took an axe to stamp duty in his mini-Budget on Friday. Movers will save up to £2,500, and 200,000 more homebuyers every year will pay no stamp duty at all. As well as putting money back in the pockets of buyers, Kwarteng said he hoped the move would 'support growth, increase confidence and help families aspiring to own their own home'. Here's how it will work...





Flotations have been in short supply this year. In the first nine months of 2021, 86 companies floated on the stock market, raising almost £14billion. This year, there have been just 34 deals raising less than £1.2billion. Now there are signs of change. Two new companies, Sustainable Farmland Trust and Independent Living Reit, are hoping to join the market in the next few weeks, both slightly unusual but offering generous dividends, a hedge against inflation and the chance of long-term growth as well.

Analysts think rates must rise more than previously thought as the mini-Budget boosts the economy - and inflation. Rates have already risen from 0.1 per cent to 2.25 per cent since December. And investors are betting they will reach 5.25 per cent next year, their highest level since 2008. The move could even include a one percentage point rise at the next meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee in November.

The reduction in the basic rate from 20 per cent to 19 per cent, and the abolition of the 45 per cent top rate, will benefit taxpayers but have a knock-on effect for pensions. It could cause a rush of extra pension contributions especially by higher earners ahead of changes in April 2023, although some basic rate taxpayers will get an extra year's breathing space due to technical transitional arrangements.

As part of a package of tax-cutting measures the Chancellor abolished the highest rate of dividend tax to align with the existing upper rate of 32.5%.

But reward schemes vary wildly in generosity and change frequently. We compare the top loyalty schemes and reveal the best strategies to maximise savings.


Each analyst trawls through countless companies to put forward new ideas for the portfolio. They seek high and low: last week the banking team was in Brazil to learn about how new financial players are disrupting the market. Analysts specialise in a sector and a region and learn it inside out. For example, one analyst is responsible for researching European semi-conductor firms and will know everything about them. The trust also buys huge data sets to look for new trends and opportunities. For example, the team looks through credit card data to spot structural changes in the way we spend.

Xpeng, which has outlined plans to break into the UK market in the next three years, says a quarter of an hour charge will boost the G9's battery pack from 10 to 80%. First deliveries in China are expected to begin from next month, with prices ranging from ¥309,900 to ¥469,900, which works at in pound sterling at around £39,000 to £59,000. It will then be made available in European markets where the manufacturer already sells cars - this includes Norway, Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands.

It's not necessarily the best time to cut stamp duty: house price inflation is in double digits, we're still recovering from an ill-timed tax holiday that stoked the pandemic boom, and the Bank of England is busy hiking interest rates to try to dampen the economy. But stamp duty is a bad tax that deters people from moving home and inhibits economic movement, so we need a proper overhaul and not another distorting holiday.

A sale would enable chief executive Nick Read to reduce the company's huge debt pile, which stands at around £36billion. It would also be a powerful riposte to activist investors who have been critical of his performance and want to see sweeping change at the FTSE100 giant. Vodafone floated its masts business, Vantage Towers, last year on the Frankfurt stock market. The most likely scenario is a 'co-control' deal under which it would sell half of its 82 per cent holding, probably to a private equity purchaser.

Rain Newton-Smith, chief economist at the Confederation of British Industry, welcomed what she said was a 'step change' in Government efforts to boost business.

Karel Komarek's group had planned to join the stock exchange through a £7.4billion merger with a special purpose acquisition company.

The Chancellor announced a plan to unlock billions of pounds of cash that could be poured into major infrastructure programmes and innovative businesses.

Even after ministers announced a new price cap, bills will still be double what they were last winter. And as households frantically seek ways to cut costs, many will be scrutinising their power consumption like never before. So is now the time to finally bite the bullet and get a smart meter? As well as automatically sending regular meter readings to your provider, these gadgets come with a small portable monitor that shows your usage in real time.

HSBC scrapped its fraud hotline in the pandemic as Co-op, Lloyds, First Direct, Metro and Santander, also fail to offer a specific number for scam victims.

Many NHS workers, teachers, firefighters and police officers face a poorer retirement after being rushed into giving up gold-plated pensions.

Half of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicle owners polled by the watchdog said they struggle to find a public charging point that is in good working order. Which? says the UK government needs to 'quickly address' a sundry of issues, namely poor reliability, difficulties making payments and poor availability in some parts of the country, else jeopardise the nation's switch to low-emission vehicles.

It's the second rise in eight weeks, meaning charging an average-size electric family hatchback from 10 to 80% battery capacity will cost around £40.

Struggling homeowners are being warned by the advertising watchdog to be wary of 'emotionally charged' adverts that tempt them into unlocking cash from their properties. Brokers have reported a rising number of older borrowers seeking to take out costly equity release loans to cope with spiralling bills. And there are fears some financial firms are exploiting the cost of living crisis by promoting equity release as a way for households to 'ease the pressure'.

The Civil Aviation Authority has written a final reminder to customers about the risk and encouraging them to spent their credit or request a cash refund.

Autumn officially begins today and there is a noticeable shift to more full-bodied shades which draw inspiration from a scorching sun.

Greg Jackson says 'far too many costs have been loaded onto standing charges - from grid and distribution charges to failed suppliers.' Rising standing charges have been a controversial subject since the energy crisis begun. It is a fixed daily amount on energy bills that you have to pay and covers the cost of supplying your property with gas and electricity.

A new best buy savings deal has launched from Castle Trust Bank enabling savers to secure a 3.47% return when fixing for one-year. It has also leapfrogged Santander in the cash Isa stakes, with a 3.15% deal. We explain who Castle Trust are and look at the rival deals in the market for savers, as interest rates improve dramatically.

Investors aged under 40 are more likely to offload shares than older people, and men show a greater tendency to liquidate their investments than women, the EQ research found.

The cap limits how much pension providers can charge people auto-enrolled into their employer's 'default' fund, which is where most keep their retirement savings.

In 2018 I discovered my then partner had taken out fraudulent loans in my name without my permission. Much of it was big high street banks and have been written off. However, he took out a £40k mortgage against the house I was gifted by my aunt which has snowballed to £51k. I live in it with my 9 year-old child and I'm worried it'll be repossessed. Can you help?

Without extra funding, quality and access will have to be scaled back further, meaning people could be waiting longer than they do now for a care package, says the County Councils Network.

I have been in constant contact with the DWP requesting confirmation of the precise details of what my pension would be, a simple question but I had conflicting information.

The Bank of England has today increased base rate by 0.5 percentage points to 2.25% as it continues to try and dampen runaway inflation. It is the Committee's seventh decision to increase the rate since December 2021 but many had expected a bigger 0.75 percentage point rise. Some predict UK interest rates may continue to rise as high as 4.5 per cent next year. We explain why the Bank of England is raising interest rates and what it means for the economy, mortgage borrowers and savers.

Experts predict that the Bank of England will announce a rise in the base rate of up to 0.75 percentage points, which could take it as high as 2.5 per cent.

NatWest and RBS have launched a new bank account switching incentives offering joiners £175 when they sign up and make one deposit. The offer is available to both new and existing NatWest and RBS customers and is one of the most generous current account switching offers currently available. Both banks, which form part of the NatWest Group, are running the offer for a limited period of time.

It's inertia that can be the real killer when it comes to savings returns, as we leave money in poor-paying legacy accounts. That's why we built a new tool for readers.

A new wave of savings platforms have emerged in recent years which help savers keep track of their accounts more easily and move money into better rates after signing up.

Business is booming for Britain's chimney sweeps, as soaring numbers of households open up their fireplaces and fit woodburners to help combat soaring energy bills. As many as 300,000 households have installed woodburners in the past year alone, adding to the three million who already use these and open fires to heat their homes. Households that for years have relied on central heating for warmth are preparing their chimneys, flues and fireplaces for a winter of log fires. In the 19th Century, sweeps would regularly recruit small children as assistants to do the dirty work of clearing out chimneys. Today Richard Mardell, owner of Bishop's Stortford Chimney Services in Hertfordshire, has begrudgingly accepted the services of an ageing journalist too fat to fit up a chimney.

I bought a flat with my friend five years ago, agreeing that when one of us wants to sell the property, it must be sold. My girlfriend and I have decided we would like to buy our own place now.

The electric EX90 SUV is due to be unveiled in November and will have a suite of tech that includes 8 cameras, 5 radars, 16 ultrasonic sensors, and a cutting-edge 'lidar' system to create 'an invisible 360-degree shield of safety'. While these are designed to alert motorists to potential dangers around them, it will also have two interior cameras, a posture sensor and touch-sensitive steering wheel to permanently monitor drivers to gauge if they are drowsy, ill or looking at their phone while at the wheel. And, if a motorist is unresponsive to a series of alerts, it can takeover control of the vehicle and bring it to a stop if it thinks a crash could be imminent.

Choosing the right DIY platform is crucial but a wealth of choice and a variety of charges can leave investors scratching their heads. We pick some of the best. We pick some of the best. We also highlight why investing in an Isa makes sense, as it should protect your hopefully growing investments from tax forever.

Buy-to-let lost some of its spark in recent years but that might be about to change as new tax cuts and low mortgage rates have caused landlords to flock back to the market.

Since the base rate began rising in December 2021, the two-year rate has increased by 1.9 per cent and the five-year rate by 1.69 per cent.

If you are interested in buying shares or know more about unearthing good companies and valuing them, read our guide to share investing.

It can seem a little overwhelming keeping up to date on what is going on with our energy bills, but as prices soar, This is Money takes a look at all of the essential things you should know about.

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