A round up of other news this week.
On 5 November the Chancellor announced that the Government would increase support to those adversely affected by COVID-19 by further extending the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), and increasing Self-employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) grants. Our separate article provides an update on the CJRS. The Chancellor had previously announced a six month extension to SEISS grants, with a third and fourth grant covering the periods from 1 November 2020 to 31 January 2021 and 1 February 2021 to 30 April 2021 respectively. When first announced the grant for the three months ended 31 January 2021 was to cover up to 20 percent of trading profits and this was subsequently increased to 40 percent on 22 October 2020 and 55 percent on 2 November 2020. In his latest update on 5 November 2020, the Chancellor announced that the overall level of the third SEISS grant would be increased again to 80 percent of three months’ average trading profits, capped at £7,500. The online service for the next grant will be available from 30 November 2020. The amount of the fourth grant for the period ended 30 April 2021, remains unconfirmed.
The Scottish Government has confirmed that its Budget will be published on 28 January 2021. Although we do not yet have a confirmed date for the UK Budget, it has been reported that the Treasury Permanent Secretary, Sir Tom Scholar, stated at a meeting of the Public Accounts Committee on 12 November 2020 that the UK Budget will take place in March next year. As previously announced, the rescheduled Welsh Budget is expected to be published on 21 December 2020, rather than on 8 December 2020 as originally proposed.
On 30 October 2020 the Government published the outcome to its recent consultation on draft regulations to amend the Bank Levy rules on deductions for certain loss absorbing instruments. Alongside the consultation outcome, updated regulations and a policy paper were published on the measure which seeks to ensure that the new Bank Levy tax rules that take effect from 1 January 2021, work as intended, where UK entities hold loss absorbing instruments issued by overseas subsidiaries. Subject to certain specified conditions, the regulations allow for loss absorbing instruments (such as shares and certain convertible debt) issued by overseas subsidiaries of UK resident entities to be deducted from equity and liabilities otherwise chargeable to the Bank Levy.
The BRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor for October has recently been published, showing a growth in sales. Don Williams, Retail Partner, KPMG in the UK, commented "this is an impressive performance by retailers, especially given the tighter household restrictions in October, but testing times lie ahead".
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