Two weeks ago, Accountancy Age asked ten leading Budget commentators to predict whether changes would be announced on Budget day in six key areas. They were asked whether there would be: a rise in VAT, abolition of inheritance tax; reform of national insurance; new aviation fuel levy; increase in stamp duty; and reform of taxation on non-domiciles.
In the event, the only concrete step taken by the chancellor in these areas was reform of national insurance. None of our pundits got everything right but six were right in five areas. Andersen, Ernst & Young, KPMG, the Institute of Directors, CIMA and the ICAEW came joint top.
The lowest scorers were PricewaterhouseCoopers and ACCA which both made correct predictions in just three of the six areas. Deloitte & Touche and the Chartered Institute of Taxation both scored four out of six.
In the forecasting business there appears to be nothing between the Big Five and the institutes and other bodies: collectively the two groups both scored 22 out of a possible 30.
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