The Budget at a glance

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NATIONAL INSURANCE

National Insurance contributions will rise by 0.5 per cent for almost everyone with effect from April 2011, with both employers and employees paying the higher rate.

INCOME TAX

Those earning more than £150,000 will pay a new top rate of income tax, 45 per cent, from April 2011. Those earning between £100,000 and £140,000 will also lose out, from April 2010 onwards, with reductions to their personal allowances that will increase tax bills.

TAX ASSISTANCE

The compensation package for earners hit by the abolition of the 10p starting rate of tax is made permanent. There is more help from tax credits for families.

HOMEOWNERS

A package of measures for those facing repossession of their homes includes more state benefits and an investment in free debt services.

VAT AND OTHER DUTIES

Cut in VAT to 15 per cent introduced from 1 December. Duty rises for alcohol, tobacco and petrol. Energy watchdog Ofgem to report on home energy prices.

CHILD BENEFITS

Benefits paid to 25 million people will rise by more than5 per cent to £20 a week for the first child and £13.20 a week for younger children in January, three months early.

PENSIONS

State pension rises to £95.25 for single persons from April. There will be a one-off £70 payment in January, plus more pension credit for those who claim it.

SMALL BUSINESSES

A package of measures: temporary increase in empty property relief for most empty properties. Timetabled taxation payments for hardest hit. Scheme worth £1bn to lend to small businesses. Corporation tax rise deferred.

ENVIRONMENT

Air passenger duty reform: those who fly furthest will pay most. Investment of £535m in energy efficiency, railways and environmental protection. Backdated road tax rises for gas-guzzlers reined in. More cash for home insulation.

ECONOMIC FORECAST

Growth forecast cut for next year to between -0.75 per cent and -1.25 per cent, with inflation forecast to drop, reaching just 0.5 per cent by the end of 2009. Growth to rise in 2010 between 1.5 per cent and 2 per cent.

BORROWING

Pre-Budget report is a "£20bn fiscal stimulus" lasting until April 2010. Projected underlying budget deficit of 2.8 per cent of GDP this year. Borrowing will rise to £78bn this year and £118bn next year, the equivalent of8 per cent of GDP.

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