A Stronger Economy

We are building an stronger and fairer economy that works for everyone. Thanks to the hard work of the British people, our economy has grown every year since we took office and is nearly 17% bigger than it was in 2010. We are at a turning point, with real wages increasing and our national debt forecasted to start its first sustained fall in a generation.

Our balanced approach means that we are supporting our vital public services, investing record amounts to improve our productivity and helping families earn more and keep more of what they earn. Over 31 million people have seen their income tax cut. Full-time workers are £2000 a year better off thanks to increases to the National Living Wage.

Since 2016 we have committed £60 billion of new tax spending to invest in the future and support our public services, while also cutting taxes for millions of working people. This means public investment in our schools, hospitals, and infrastructure in this Parliament will be at its highest sustained level for 40 years.

How are we building an economy that works for everyone:

We will improve our productivity by embracing new technologies, investing in skills and infrastructure and helping businesses create better, higher-paying jobs. We are delivering an ambitious Industrial Strategy by:

  • Increasing the National Productivity Investment Fund to £31 billion as well as increasing R&D spending by the largest amount for 40 years.

  • Establishing the UK as a world-leader in emerging technology such as artificial intelligence and driverless cars while boosting skills in STEM and technology.

We are supporting our public services, with over £6 billion additional funding for the NHS, and getting Britain ready for Brexit with over £3 billion of related funding. We are meeting our NATO 2% defence spending target.

How are we helping families with the everyday cost of living:

Wages are rising, inflation is falling and record employment means more money in people's pockets.

We are further helping families with the everyday cost of living by:

  • Increasing the National Living Wage, worth £600 this year for a full-time worker.
  • Increasing the Personal Allowance, meaning a typical taxpayer pays over £1000 less income tax than in 2010/11.

  • Freezing fuel duty for the eighth successive year, saving an average driver £850, compared to the pre-2010 escalator plans.

  • Capping energy prices, cutting monthly bills for millions of families.

  • Helping people with problem debt. Using the powers given to them in 2014, the FCA have announced a price cap on rent-to-own as part of their high-cost credit review. We are also launching a consultation on tougher regulation for pre-paid funeral plans, to help stop grieving families from being ripped off.

  • Introducing a new railcard for those aged 26-30.

  • We have abolished Stamp Duty on first time buyers for homes under £300,000 and reduced it for homes between £300,000 and £500,000. More than 60,000 first time buyers have already benefitted.

Our Local Economy:

  • A higher rate of unemployment: The average rate of employment across the country is 71.8 % compared to 75.9 % here in Swindon.
  • More opportunities for young people: Over 7,400 more apprenticeships have also been created. This means that more young people in Swindon are earning and learning, getting the skills they need for a successful and secure future. 
  • A flourishing economic hub: An annual report published by the Centre for Cities recognised Swindon as a town that has huge potential in terms of future growth. The town delivers higher productivity levels than cities much larger in size and performs strongly on a range of economic indicators, including productivity and share of knowledge-based jobs.
  • A business friendly community: The Government’s long-term economic plan has helped many new businesses launch in Swindon. The start-up business rate is twice the national rate and the weekly wage is also above the national average.
  • Looking back at how far Swindon has come: This year is a very important celebration for our town as we mark the anniversary of the birth of Swindon New Town 175 years ago. Since its humble beginnings as a small market town Swindon has since become a pillar of growth for the UK with its rich history, thriving business and vibrant communities.

An Economic and Fiscal Overview:

  • GDP: Growth was 1.8% in 2017. The OBR forecast growth for this year of 1.5% and the IMF has upgraded their growth forecast for 2018 to 1.6%. 
  • Inflation: CPI inflation fell to 2.3% in May. The OBR forecast it to fall further, to 2.1% by the end of 2018. 
  • Employment: Employment is at a new record high at over 32 million, and the OBR forecast 500,000 more jobs by 2022. Unemployment is 4.2%, the lowest rate since 1975, and real wages have now returned to growth.
  • Borrowing: We have reduced the deficit by three-quarters from a post-war high of 9.9% of GDP in 2009/10 to 2.3% of GDP in 2016/17, which is the lowest level since 2001/02. 

Tax Changes that Came into Effect in April 2018:

We are helping people earn more and keep more of what they earn:

  • The National Living Wage has increased by 4.4% from £7.50 to £7.83. A full-time minimum wage worker's annual pay has increased by over £2000 since the introduction of the National Living Wage in April 2016.
  • The State Pension is increasing by 3%, meaning a cash increase of £3.65 per week for those in retirement, and the full new State Pension will rise by £4.80 per week. 
  • The tax-free personal allowance is increasing from £11,500 to £11,850. A typical base rate taxpayer will pay £1,075 less income tax in 2018/19 than in 2010/11 as a result of the increases to the personal allowance. 
  • ​​​​​​​Fuel duty will remain frozen for the eighth successive year at 57.95 pence per litre to help with motoring costs - saving households and businesses an extra £850m a year in total - or £160 for the average driver.
  • ​​​​​​​Alcohol duty cuts in previous Budgets followed by a duty freeze last year means the tax on a typical pint of beer will continue to be 12p lower than it would otherwise have been since ending the beer duty escalator in 2013. 
  • Pubs will have a £1000 discount on business rates if they have a rateable value of £100,000 or less. We're also supporting a high-street businesses by switching to business rates indexation this month, two years earlier than planned, saving businesses £2.3 billion over the next 5 years.
  • By 2020, parents and grandparents will be able to pass on assets of up to £1 million to their children and grandchildren without paying any inheritance tax.