Yes! It's time for Fantasy Chancellor of the Exchequer!
We're a week away from Budget Day, to be delivered from under the bleak skies of a global recession. Times are tough, especially if you've got nonsensically black eyebrows and a syrup as pure as snow. But just imagine if it were you, yes you, that had such concerns weighing heavy on your shoulders?
So it's time for the return of our favourite game here at Bitterwallet HQ - Fantasy Chancellor of the Exchequer! All you have to do is provide us with a smattering of economic announcements you would make next Wednesday, if the job was yours. We'll pick the best and award them with now-legendary non-existent BW prize packs! What fun!
As a guide, here are a few points that Alistair Darling is thought to be considering:
- the level of VAT is likely to increase back to its former level of 17.5 per cent, but could Darling rack it up a little higher? Accountants Smith & Williamson say the Treasury would gain an additional £2.5 billion a year per 0.5 per cent rise, so raising VAT to 19 or 20 per cent would mean plenty of additional money for the Government coffers.
- there are whispers of raising the cap on cash ISAs from £3,600 to £5,000, to encourage more consumer saving
- a new higher income tax rate for earnings above £150,000 has already been proposed for 2011, meaning those affected would hand over a whopping 45 per cent of their cash to the taxman, if they haven't already sodded off to Andorra. But will it be brought forward to 2010?
- press reports state the budget will bring about a start of a green revolution; consumers will offered up to £5,000 towards the cost of an electric or hybrid car from 2011
But that's what the current government think we need, but to be frank they've made a sow's ear of the gig so far. So it's over to you. You're the Chancellor next Wednesday - what would you do?