As at January 2013

Geography

The Romans invaded Britain in 55BC and subsequently incorporated it into the Roman Empire. Then the Normans invaded the Britain in 1066 at the Battle of Hastings. The Glorious Revolution in 1688 provided the impetus for uniting the separate kingdoms of Britain. Today, the United Kingdom does not have a written constitution but constitutional rights subsist in common law, statutory intervention and delegated powers to the each of kingdoms of Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.

Population

UK population at 31 December 2012 is 63.2 mil (2010 was 62.3 mil) – with England 53.0 mil, Scotland 5.3 mil, Wales 3.1 mil, Northern Ireland 1.8 mil (NATSTATS 2013). Natural changes and net migration impact on UK population in the last 12 years are as follows::

UK population

Economy

GDP for the quarter ending 30 September 2012 amounted to 0.9%, reversing the previous three quarters of negative growth at -0.4%, -0.2, and -0.3%. GDP per capita is estimated at USD$36,510 for 2012 (TRADE ECON 2013) – see bar chart below.

The size of the UK economy measured on PPP basis is 2.432 tri USD, being the 8th largest economy in the world (behind US, China, India, Japan, Germany, Russia and Brazil), and 6th if measured on absolute basis, ignoring PPP.

UK GDP per capita

Average weekly total earnings (AWE) are £471pw (see table below), with the year-on-year increase in AWE of 1.8% (being below the CPI rate for the same period of 2.7%pa). The UK unemployment rate is currently at 7.8%.

AWE (including bonuses) –October 2012

UK_AWE

Inflation CPI(all groups) for the year-on-year movement to December 2012 is 2.7% – CPI to 31 December 2012

UK inflation CPI

Financial

The Bank Of England cash rate at 15 January 2013 remains at 0.5%. UK’s 10 year bond rate has lowered to 2.00% (FT 2013).

UK 10Y bond rate

UK’s home loan rate (Halifax 2013) is 4.3% and its prime overdraft rate is from 7.9% (Santander 2013).

The FTSE 100 index for the UK stock exchange at 15  January 2013 is 6,093 (2012 was 5,648), up 7.3% year on year performance (FT 2013):

UK FTSE100

Fiscal

Individual tax rates in the UK for 2013-14 and prior years are as listed in the table below:

Rate 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14
Starting rate for savings: 10%* £0 – £2,560 £0-£2,710 £0- £2,790
Basic rate: 20% £0 – £35,000 £0-£34,370 £0-£32,010
Higher rate: 40% £35,001 – £150,000 £34,371- £150,000 £32,011- £150,000
Additional rate: 50% Over £150,000 Over £150,000 N/A
45% from 6 April 2013 Over £150,000 Over £150,000 Over £150,000

Corporation tax rates in the UK for 2013 (and prior years) –see table below (HM Revenue 2013).

Rate 2010 2011 2012 2013
Small profits rate* 21%* 20%* 20%*
Small profits rate can be claimed by qualifying companies with profits at a rate not exceeding £300,000 £300,000 £300,000
Marginal Relief Lower Limit £300,000 £300,000 £300,000
Marginal Relief Upper Limit £1,500,000 £1,500,000 £1,500,000
Standard fraction 7/400 3/200 1/100
Main rate of Corporation Tax* 28%* 26%* 24%* 23%*
Special rate for unit trusts and open- ended investment companies

Double tax treaties

Algeria, Antigua, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Ajabaijan, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia, Bosnia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burma, Cameroon, Canada, Caymans, Chile, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Ethiopia, Falklands, Fiji, Finland, France, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Granada, Guernsey, Guyana, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia,

Iran, Ireland, Isle of Man, Israel, Italy, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Japan, Jersey, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kiribati, Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Libya, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Macedonia, Malawi, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Montserrat, Morocco, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, PNG, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, USA , USSR, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam , Zaire, Zambia and Zimbabwe (HM Revenue 2013).

Currencies

The Great Britain Pound traded on 16 January 2013 as follows – GPB£1.00 equals €1.20 (2012-€1.21), USD$1.60 (2012-USD$1.53), AUD$ 1.52 (2012 –AUD$1.48) and ZAR14.05 (2012-ZAR12.37) – small appreciation on average 2-4% year-on-year (except for large appreciation over ZAR).

 

References