Budget 2013: Corporation tax slashed to 20% and ALL firms to get 2,000 national insurance cut

Budget 2013: Corporation tax slashed to 20% and ALL firms to get 2,000 National Insurance cut to boost business and encourage small companies to hire staff Chancellor has already slashed the headline tax rate from 28% to 24%Due to fall to 23% next month, 21% in April 2014 and now 20% in 2015But some bosses believe it should be cut lower than the 12.5% in Ireland Employers' NI contributions will be reduced by 2,000 for every company /13″ class=”blkBorder” /> Going down: This graph from figures on the Institute for Fiscal Studies website shows how the standard rate of corporation tax has dropped from 34 per cent in 1990/91 to 24 per cent in 2012/13 Announcing the cut to 21 per cent in the Autumn Statement last December, Mr Osborne said it was ‘the lowest rate of any major western economy’. He added: ‘It is an advert for our country that says come here, invest here, create jobs here. Britain is open for business.’ Tax experts said a further cut could be on the way in the Budget

How that extra mince pie or tot of brandy could take years off your life

How that extra mince pie or tot of brandy could take years off your life Smoking, eating red meat and watching TV can each knock at least 30 minutes off your life expectancy for every day you indulgeBut you could claw back time by sticking to just one alcoholic drink and eating plenty of fruit and veg | UPDATED: 23:30 GMT, 17 December 2012 Every over-indulgence can reduce your life expectancy by at least half an hour, say Cambridge scientists Having that extra mince pie, seconds of roast turkey or an extra tipple takes hours off your life, new research suggests.

Why the Monday blues means you should make your doctor"s appointment for the end of the week

Why the Monday blues means you should make doctors appointments for the end of the week Appointments made for the beginning of the week were missed more often than those at the endPatients may feel less able to cope with the prospect of being given bad news at the start of the working weekShifting appointments to Thursday and Friday could save NHS 60m a year, claim experts | UPDATED: 11:24 GMT, 17 December 2012 When booking a GP appointment, your best bet is to avoid the start of the week. For a study has found this is when patients are most likely to miss their consultations due to Monday morning blues. Study author Dr Rob Jenkins, from Glasgow University, said: 'Mondays are worst for missed appointments

Schools should axe citizenship lessons and teach more British history, say MPs as they bid to half decline in the subject

Schools should axe citizenship lessons and teach more British history, say MPs as they bid to half decline in the subject Cross-party group of MPs calling on Education Secretary to introduce measures to boost history teaching In 2010, fewer than 30 per cent of 16-year-olds at state schools did GCSE history | UPDATED: 01:47 GMT, 10 December 2012 Forgotten figure: Last year only half of English 18-24 year olds knew that Nelson led the Royal Navy to victory in the Battle of Trafalgar Schools should axe Labour’s citizenship classes and devote more time to British history studies, MPs will say today. The idea is one of a string of measures being put forward to reverse the decline in history teaching which has seen the subject all but disappear in state schools in some parts of the country. Research by the All-Party History Group found that fewer than 30 per cent of 16-year-olds in state schools were entered for the GCSE in 2010, compared with 55 per cent of pupils in grammar schools and 48 per cent in private schools.

5m will be paying higher-rate tax: Record number snared in 40% trap within next three years

5m will be paying higher-rate tax: Record number snared in 40% trap within next three years Hundreds of thousands of families who do not consider themselves wealthy are being pushed into tax band which they thought was for the well-off Worker currently qualifies for 40p rate when their salary is 42,475Salary threshold will be lowered next year to 41,450 | UPDATED: 23:50 GMT, 6 December 2012 A record five million workers will be paying higher-rate tax by 2015 – half a million more than the Treasury has predicted. The true scale of the 40 per cent tax trap was revealed yesterday by Britain’s leading economic forecaster

Autumn Statement: Labour refuses to back 1% cap on benefits rises but minister insists the era of the "generous" welfare state is over

Labour refuses to back 1% cap on benefits rises but minister insists the era of the 'generous' welfare state is over Pensions minister Steve Webb warns the state of the nation's finances means 'difficult decisions' had to be made George Osborne used the Autumn Statement to say rises in working age benefits will be capped at 1 per cent from April 2013 Chancellor said the cap would be enshrined in law – forcing Labour to decide whether to oppose limits which polls indicate will be welcomed by the public By Matt Chorley and Tim Shipman PUBLISHED: 00:11 GMT, 6 December 2012 | UPDATED: 00:00 GMT, 7 December 2012 ‘ Lib Dem pensions minister Steve Webb said the state of the public finances meant benefits could not be as 'generous' as they were in the past Labour is refusing to back the unprecedented cuts to welfare benefits outlined by George Osborne in his Autumn Statement. Ministers have insisted that Britain can no longer afford the ‘generous’ handouts of the past, but in its verdict on the statement, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) said that its effect will be to take from the poor and give to the middle.

The Vicar wears Prada: How the Rev who posed for a fashion shoot in a dog collar has caused a most unholy row among the faithful

The Vicar wears Prada: How the Rev who posed for a fashion shoot in a dog collar has caused a most unholy row among the faithfulRev Sally Hitchiner posed in tight silver leather trousers worth over 1000Shoot was response to vote for women bishops that took place last monthRev Hitchiner: 'Why shouldn't a priest be interested in Prada I dress in a way that reflects my personality.' | UPDATED: 23:08 GMT, 2 December 2012 An interesting poser has been exercising the Reverend Sally Hitchiner over the past week. She has posted several tweets on her Twitter page — where she describes herself as an ‘Anglican priest, faith adviser, broadcaster…

Political class out of tune with the public

Political class out of tune with the public | UPDATED: 22:17 GMT, 30 November 2012 Yesterday the BBC was leading its bulletins with the utterly underwhelming story that the campaign group Hacked Off has launched a petition calling for the implementation of the Leveson report. Let us put to one side that the moralising sanctimony over the printed press pouring out of the BBC sits uncomfortably with its own appalling conduct over Jimmy Savile and Lord McAlpine, and return to the real world, where events are taking place which have real impact on its millions of licence-fee payers

Why George Osborne has no alternative but to cut taxes

Why George Osborne has no alternative but to cut taxes | UPDATED: 22:14 GMT, 30 November 2012 Chancellor George Osborne faces a most unenviable task on Wednesday. With Britain’s economy in such a dire condition, he must secretly wish he didn’t have to go to the Commons to deliver his annual Autumn Statement.