Research papers

The A303 Stonehenge tunnel: the best use of taxpayers' money?

The South West of England has long suffered from poor transport infrastructure relative to the rest of England, with severe congestion on major roads and an often inadequate rail network. This note from the TaxPayers' Alliance argues that the money being spent on the Stonehenge tunnel could be significantly better-spent... Read more...

20 Years of Council Tax

Seven years on from the introduction of the council tax freeze scheme in 2010 – a coalition government policy of providing grants to local authorities in England to allow them to freeze Council tax – it appears that the days of inflation busting increases are back. Although in 2010-11 there... Read more...

Public Sector Paper Procurement - Craig Mackinlay MP

By Craig Mackinlay MP After several years of spending restraint, all quarters of the public sector are lobbying the chancellor for more money often claiming that there are no more savings to be made. But as this note shows, many public sector bodies are not getting value for money from... Read more...

Nationalisation: the real rail rip-off

As the debate around 'renationalising' the railways continues, and rail fares are due to increase yet again, a new report from the TaxPayers' Alliance shows that privatisation has actually been a good thing for commuters in the UK. CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL PAPER. Read more...

Government-Approved Christmas Day Food

This year Public Health England has spent over £40 million of taxpayers money telling Brits what they can and cannot eat, drink and do in their leisure time. Using these warnings and guidelines, the TaxPayers' Alliance has calculated what a Public Health England approved Christmas lunch would look like.  Click here for the full note. ... Read more...

A to Z of NHS Prescriptions

The government's reiterations that the NHS should work more efficiently should be welcomed. Yet small changes to how it procures prescriptions could lead to significant savings. Doctors should not prescribe branded medicines when the non-branded alternatives provide the same benefits to patients. Whilst there are patented medicines which necessarily preclude... Read more...

The Tax on Christmas

New research by the TaxPayers' Alliance shows how the taxman sucks the Christmas cheer out of Brits by imposing stealth Christmas taxes.  Christmas taxes, as calculated by the TPA, include the cost of VAT on holiday shopping such as Christmas trees, children's toys and alcohol. With the cost of living on... Read more...

Inflation Tax

IntroductionRead the full report here. Is inflation a tax? At first glance, it may be tempting to conclude that it is not. It does not appear anywhere on the statute books. Nobody is charged with collecting it. Yet just like a tax, it is a transfer of wealth not based on free... Read more...

Post-Brexit Budget

Cutting EU Waste – The Taxpayer-Friendly Option for the EU’s Post-Brexit Budget  Introduction  In a separate Red Cell paper, William Norton reviews the impact of the UK leaving the EU on the latter’s finances. In short, the algebra means that the big donor countries pay up more to plug the gap. ... Read more...

Does borrowing pay for itself?

John McDonnell, the shadow chancellor, recently claimed that further debt incurred under his treasury would “pay for itself”, optimistically assuming that the fiscal multiplier would cover the interest and principal through higher tax receipts. Government borrowing has to be funded and if capital is not attracted domestically (reducing private spending),... Read more...

The impact of beer duty on investment

The beer industry in the UK has invested billions more since the beer duty escalator was scrapped in 2013. Investment in 2016 was £1.96 billion, which is £800 million more than in 2013. 2013 was the year when the beer duty 'escalator' was scrapped and a planned 3p increase instead became a... Read more...

The growing burden of stamp duty towards 2021-22

Read the full report. Since the 2014 autumn statement, stamp duty land tax (SDLT) on residential property purchases has been applied at a marginal rate of 2 per cent between £125,001 and £250,000, 5 per cent between £250,001 and £925,000, 10 per cent between £925,001 and £1.5 million and 12... Read more...

Beer duty will result in thousands of job losses.

The beer industry in the UK provides nearly 900,000 jobs and contributes £23bn annually to the UK economy. The sector also supports the employment of a large number of people in underrepresented groups such as young people and those in regions with relatively high levels of unemployment. However, the government... Read more...

Why we shouldn't increase borrowing

The government would be wrong to use low interest rates to borrow and spend more A new paper by the TaxPayers' Alliance sets out the economic landscape in which the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) will make its latest interest rate decision, and makes the case for not raising borrowing or... Read more...

The efficacy of council public health spending

  Across the UK, local authorities and NHS boards are responsible for delivering changes to people’s behaviour for areas associated with purportedly poor lifestyle choices. The Health and Social Care Act 2012 in particular lead to the decentralisation of public health spending, campaigns and interventions to local authorities in England.... Read more...

The impact of beer duty on consumers

There are health risks to people from excessive consumption of alcohol. Furthermore, excessive consumption can place a burden on society due to the cost of paying for healthcare and the criminal justice system . As a result, the government levies a duty on beer which is designed to discourage its... Read more...

Council Mileage Allowances

New research by the TaxPayers' Alliance reveals that councils are paying their staff millions more than they should in mileage payments. HMRC has an approved rate for mileage payments, and yet 173 councils are giving their employees above that rate.The TPA first exposed this needless waste of taxpayers' money back in 2011, and... Read more...

Young People and National Insurance

Tuition fee hikes, planning policies and lifestyle taxes all hit younger people hardest by making education, housing and entertainment more expensive. The government should lighten the load it places on young people, but abolishing tuition fees or making student loan repayment terms even more generous would be unfair to those... Read more...

Why the cost of living is so high

  Executive summary    The UK economy has performed reasonably well in recent years after a period of sluggish growth following the great recession. Unemployment is at its lowest point since early 1975. However, wage growth has remained slow, and many households are struggling to cope with the cost of... Read more...

Public sector pay and strikes

Despite a narrative of squeezed public services, the wages, salaries and pensions of those in taxpayer-funded positions are all on average more generous. Since 2009, gross median annual salaries in the public sector were on average 12.4 per cent higher than the private sector. Click here to read the full... Read more...

Union Rich List 2017

Our research reveals that 45 public sector trade union bosses receive more than £100,000 each year in salary and benefits. This places them comfortably within the top 5 per cent of earners in the UK. Click here to read the full report. Read more...

Council Charges and Rates

Local authorities in England have seen dramatic changes to their funding since 2010 with more changes in the pipeline. The government announced in 2015 that within five years, local authorities will be able to raise and keep all revenue from business rates. Additional powers over how council tax is raised... Read more...

Reforming Public Sector Procurement

The UK spends almost double the rest of the EU combined on large procurement contracts, and much less on smaller ones, research finds. The United Kingdom published 167 contract award notices on contracts worth €100 million or above. France published 29, Italy 25 and Germany 5. These are worth altogether €73.77 billion and accounted for 52 per cent of such notices... Read more...

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