Chancellor Jeremy Hunt will update everyone on the nation’s finances tomorrow (Picture: Getty Images)
It never really feels like autumn until you’ve got your nice big mug of hot chocolate, and you’re snuggling under a woolly blanket to watch Jeremy Hunt deliver his latest budget statement.
As certain as the leaves changing colour and people moaning about how early the shops are putting up their Christmas displays, the chancellor is busy preparing to talk through the state of the nation’s finances.
Whether you run your own business or just manage your personal bank account, what he will announce – or not – tomorrow afternoon matters.
In recent days and weeks, there’s been plenty of speculation about what Mr Hunt might produce from his red despatch box.
So what can you expect to hear tomorrow – and how might it affect you?
When will Jeremy Hunt present the Autumn Statement?
Chancellor Jeremy Hunt will give his Autumn Statement at around 12.30pm tomorrow.
As per usual for these sorts of things, it comes straight after Prime Minister’s Questions – so timings may vary depending on how juicy the preceding session is.
It comes a little over eight months after the budget was announced on March 15, and will give an update on how those policies are going.
There may also be a few new plans and policies tossed into the mix, since the country’s financial situation has unsurprisingly taken a few twists and turns since the spring.
What is Jeremy Hunt going to announce?
There’s a chance Mr Hunt won’t announce anything. Unlike the budget in March, there isn’t necessarily an expectation that new policies will be brought forward.
Last year’s Autumn Statement was, of course, a little different: it was largely an attempt to clear up the extraordinary mess left in the wake of the recently departed prime minister Liz Truss’s mini-budget.
This time round, things aren’t quite as hectic in the world of the UK economy – in fact, inflation is almost half what it was when the budget was announced.
But despite a hefty amount of pressure from his fellow Tories, Mr Hunt may not announce significant tax cuts tomorrow out of fear it would undo that progress.
Both Mr Hunt and Rishi Sunak have come under pressure to cut taxes (Picture: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
He told Sky News yesterday: ‘The one thing we won’t do is any kind of tax cut that fuels inflation.
‘We’ve done all this hard work. We’re not going to throw that away.’
Nevertheless, he said he was determined to demonstrate there is ‘a path to a lower tax economy’, hinting at bigger announcements to come when the 2024 budget rolls around in a few months’ time.
Several taxes are reportedly in the government’s sights, with Mr Hunt saying ‘everything is on the table’.
There could be a cut to stamp duty, which you pay when buying a property, and inheritance tax, which is paid on the estate of someone who’s died if it’s worth more than £325,000.
BBC News has reported that the Autumn Statement might include at least one ‘personal tax cut’, such as income tax.
The statement will also include major changes to the benefits system, under the government’s Back To Work Plan which will involve hundreds of thousands of claimants being told to find a job they can do at home, according to The Times.
If they cannot find work within 18 months, they’ll have to undertake work experience placements.
There may also be a squeeze on benefits payments, with Mr Hunt deciding whether to increase them by September’s inflation figure – which was 6.7% – or the October figure – which was 4.6%.