British budget (it should be noted) assumes success for Brexit negotiations

London correspondent:  Britain’s budget, announced on Monday by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, mainly comprised the small fixes voters have got used to:  here tweaking tax thresholds, there nudging up stealth taxes, a little more cash for schools now and a (perhaps not-so-small) digital tax in the future.  But what was more interesting was the acknowledgement that the budget assumed a satisfactory outcome for the current Brexit negotiations and that a totally different budget would be required in the event of failure.

In fact, Britain’s economy has performed much better since Britain voted to leave the European Union than predicted by those who opposed exit.  Neither consumers nor businesses responded to the uncertainty by hunkering down and slashing expenditure.  But if Britain leaves in March next year without a transition deal covering areas like trade, commerce, transport and communications, there is likely to be at least temporary, perhaps significant, disruption to transaction flows. Continue reading “British budget (it should be noted) assumes success for Brexit negotiations”