City reacts to Chancellor’s mini-budget

The Chancellor today unveiled his official Growth Plan to kick-start the British economy by tackling high energy costs and inflation and delivering higher productivity and wages.

Among the measures in the announcement were the cancellation of the planned corporation tax rise, keeping it at 19%. Other measures included a cut to the basic rate of income tax to 19% in April 2023 and proposed stamp duty reductions. City analysts and industry experts gave a mixed reaction to the announcement, with some providers praising the roll-back of regulation whilst others questioned the approach.

Dr Henry Balani, Global Head of Industry and Regulatory Affairs for Encompass Corporation, said, “The Chancellor rightly underlined his commitment to enabling the UK financial services sector to remain competitive, offering a few hints that the government is set to announce more widespread regulatory changes in the coming months. All too often the debate around the impact of regulation is framed around either strengthening or scrapping existing rules. Not enough attention is given to the implementation process itself. For example, when it comes to tackling issues such as fraud and money laundering, technology platforms can play a crucial role in helping banks reduce risk and stay compliant.”

Khalid Talukder, co-founder, DKK Partners, a London-based emerging FX markets specialist said: “The constraints of the 2008 global financial crisis have kept the city of London on a leash for far too long. Overwhelming amounts of regulation and red tape has effectively chloroformed entrepreneurs and ambitious financial services firms, whilst rival cities have been set free to expand and grow without interference. These proposals will turbocharge the city and empower the wider UK economy and should have happened years ago.” 

Daniel Layne, founder, and CEO of fintech QV Systems said, “It’s important to recognise that regulation plays a crucial role in protecting consumers and businesses from poor practices such as mis-selling, data loss, and fraud. Whilst proposals to roll-back some of these policies to liberate the city and drive economic growth are admirable, great care needs to be taken to mitigate any negative issues that may arise from these measures.

“Changes to regulation should be proportionate and considered, to avoid unintended harm to the long-term future of the financial services industry,” added Layne.