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The manifestos of the three main parties

Gordon Brown, David Cameron and Nick Clegg (names in alphabetical order, in case you’re wondering) have had a busy few weeks, but so have I.

I’ve spent hours pouring over the manifestos of the three main parties to glean the major items of interest about their tax policies. It was 264 pages in all, which took a lot of digesting and you can download the manifestos in full below. I presented my findings in a webinar on April 29th, with the intention of making things clearer for people, and possibly to help them cast their vote on May 6th.

But don’t worry if you missed it. Here’s a brief resume of what I found. (You can see the full presentation by clicking here).

  1. Inheritance Tax. Tories will increase exemption to £1 million. Labour will keep it at £325,000.
  2. Personal allowances. Lib Dems will increase personal allowances to £10,000.
  3. Personal pensions. Labour will restrict tax relief on pension contributions of those earning over £130,000
  4. Corporation Tax. Labour will set the small companies rate at 21% and main Corporation Tax rate at 28%; Tory figures are 20% and 25% respectively.
  5. Capital Gains Tax. Labour will double Entrepreneur’s Relief to £2 million. Lib Dems will reduce annual exemption to £2,000.
  6. Stamp Duty Land Tax. Tories will charge no stamp duty for first-time buyers indefinitely on properties of £250,000 or less. Labour’s zero stamp duty for first-time buyers of properties of £250,000 or less will be for two years only.
  7. Gift Aid. Lib Dems will limit tax relief on charity giving to 23%.
  8. Other taxes. Labour proposes a 50p levy on landline phone lines; Tories will abolish this. Lib Dems will introduce a Mansion tax of 1% a year on all residential properties worth £2 million or more.
  9. Tax credits. Tories and Lib Dems will reform tax credits.

See also Andrew Gray’s blog ‘Policies not personalities‘, where he offers some ideas on which party to vote for based on their policies.

Here are the manifestos in full:

The Labour Party Manifesto 2010

The Conservative Party Manifesto 2010

The Liberal Democrat Party Manifesto 2010

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