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18 March 2015 saw George Osborne's Budget speech, heralded by Mr Osborne announcing that 'Britain is walking tall again' and promising to 'use whatever additional resources we have to get the deficit and the debt falling'. Patrick Cook, a partner and head of corporate turnaround and insolvency, and Richard Clark, a legal director, both at Burges Salmon LLP, examine what the drivers behind the hyperbole might mean for the insolvency community.
Few can mistake the intent behind statements such as:
'no short term giveaway can ever begin to help people as much as the long term benefits of a recovering national economy...I said we would turn Britain around—and in this last Budget of the Parliament we will not waiver from that task.'
Osborne’s message is clear: he expects to continue to make cuts to public finances in order to balance the books and will not be making 'unfunded spending' or 'irresponsible extra borrowing'. His announcements make clear that Britain needs to make an extra £30 billion of savings by 2017/18. Of that, he expects £13 billion to come from government departments, £12 billion from welfare savings and £5 billion from measures designed to prevent tax avoidance, tax evasion and aggressive tax planning. Although he has not—understandably, due to the impending election—stated where the axe will fall, fall it will. At the same time these Keynesian ideals are being pursued, it is also likely that interest rates will not rise significantly, not least because a financial recovery (and any inflation it brings) will help the government to reduce the deficit more quickly. Let’s take a look at expected trends from these themes of the Budget, should Osborne and his cohorts be re-elected.
With one of the key themes from the Budget speech being cuts and deficit reduction, market commentators have started to question whether the spectre of 'benign
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Stephen qualified as a solicitor in 2005 and joined the Restructuring and Insolvency team at Lexis®PSL in September 2014 from Shoosmiths LLP, where he was a senior associate in the restructuring and insolvency team.
Primarily focused on contentious and advisory corporate and personal insolvency work, Stephen’s experience includes acting for office-holders on a wide range of issues, including appointments, investigations and the recovery and realisation of assets (including antecedent transaction claims), and for creditors in respect of the impact on them of the insolvency of debtors and counterparties.
0330 161 1234