Would you open a British ISA?

Jeremy Hunt’s Spring Budget was a rather unflashy affair, with no big headline-grabbing, rabbit-out-of-the-hat moment.

This was a surprise when you consider that we’re in a general election year, but it does explain why the reaction to the entire fiscal event was rather muted and why the Budget hasn’t moved the dial politically.

But there was one announcement that made some people sit up and take note – the introduction of a £5,000 “British ISA” tax allowance.

This would allow an additional £5,000 annual investment for investments in UK equity, and give savers the chance to capitalise on the growth of the “most promising” domestic businesses in a tax-efficient way.

As yet, no date on when the British ISA will be introduced has been confirmed, while the finer details are to be put out for consultation for six months.

Details, therefore, remain fairly sketchy, but we can at least measure the response to the Chancellor’s announcement.

According to a poll by Opinium, 48 per cent of adults in the UK are open to the idea of opening a British ISA.

Interestingly, 57 per cent of those who already have an ISA said they would think about opening a British ISA, and this rises to 63 per cent among those who currently hold a Stocks and Share ISA.

But at the same time, a quarter of those polled said they wouldn’t consider opening a British ISA, with many saying this is because of a lack of savings or investments.

Others, meanwhile, said they weren’t interested in investing in UK assets, while some said they hadn’t heard enough about it to make a decision.

It’s important to point out that the idea of introducing a British ISA was met with some criticism from some in the financial services sector, with a number of critics arguing that it’s hard to see how it can be practically implemented.

But the Opinium survey shows that a significant number of people are at least open to the idea that’s being put forward, especially those who already have an ISA and would be able to boost their tax-free allowance.

As ever, the devil will be in the details, so we will be keeping a very close eye on what happens in the upcoming consultation, so we can make sure you’re getting the right information every step of the way.

If you have any questions about saving for the future and making the most of your tax allowances, please contact us and we’ll be happy to speak with you.

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The guidance and/or advice contained within this website is subject to the UK regulatory regime and is therefore primarily targeted at consumers based in the UK. Welby is a trading name of Welby Associates Wealth Management Ltd Company Registered Number NI630504 who is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, FCA register number 697372. The Financial Ombudsman Service is available to sort out individual complaints that clients and financial services businesses aren't able to resolve themselves. To contact the Financial Ombudsman Service please visit www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk

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