New year, new era: tax and spend in 21st Century Britain

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Tax and Welfare

Eras of Britain’s political economy come and go. They ebb and flow, driven by political and economic cycles. Sometimes shifts are hard to see at the time, particularly when they are obscured by the political fog of war. Or Brexit, as it’s currently known. But noticed or not, the financial year starting this Saturday will mark the … Continued

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CB40: Happy 40th birthday to child benefit! But will it last another twenty?

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Incomes and Inequality, Tax and Welfare

Yesterday, the minimum wage celebrated its 20th birthday. Today, child benefit is having a 40th birthday bash. But, as this analysis shows, it’s become a somewhat modest affair, with (record) low generosity, fewer people invited than in earlier years, and particularly complicated arrangements. So today is a good time to step back and take stock … Continued

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Top of the Charts: Yellow jackets

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Tax and Welfare

Sign up for our weekly Top of the Charts emails here   Afternoon all,   Welcome to 2019, a year which seems to have decided to use its first week to remind us that we are an island nation. I’ve not seen much news in recent days, but from the headlines I gather we’re spending our … Continued

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How wealth taxes can raise billions more without scaring any horses

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Tax and Welfare

Raising taxes is never easy. Raising taxes with the government’s slim parliamentary majority is harder still. Raising taxes on wealth in those circumstances, given our diverging senses of fairness is…  not a walk in the park. But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t need doing, and the good news is that significant progress can be made … Continued

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Boosting benefit take-up is critical to the success of Universal Credit, but we might not be able to measure whether it’s working

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Tax and Welfare

Benefit take-up rates matter. A lot. If households aren’t actually receiving the benefits that government policy entitles them to, their incomes will be lower and the social safety net will not work as intended. The government’s own estimates of benefits take-up suggest that billions of pounds worth of benefits probably go unclaimed each year. Take-up … Continued

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Three steps to make it a happier new year for Universal Credit

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Tax and Welfare

Universal Credit (UC) was a surprise contender for one of the big stories of the Budget, with the Chancellor announcing a welcome reinjection of cash into the system. UC has (finally) hit another important milestone too ­– as of December 2018, it is on offer to all new claimants of working-age benefits in jobcentres across … Continued

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