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Stamp duty receipts dropped to £848m in January

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  • 21/02/2019
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Stamp duty receipts dropped to £848m in January
Stamp duty receipts fell to £848m in January, the latest data from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has revealed.

The figure is down from the £1.1bn received in December, and is also the lowest figure for stamp duty since last February.

HMRC also noted that receipts for the tax year to date, from April 2018 to January, had fallen by 5.7 per cent on the same period in the last financial year.

The taxman put some of this decline down to the devolution of stamp duty payments in Wales, which took place last April. It also noted the introduction of stamp duty relief for first-time buyers, which allows those purchasing a first property to pay no tax on transactions worth up to £300,000 as well as reduced rates on purchases worth up to £500,000, back in November 2017.

Nonetheless, Hargreaves Lansdown pointed out that stamp duty receipts have jumped by around 39 per cent over that same time period, in no small part due to the introduction of a stamp duty surcharge on purchases of second homes.

A slow and steady housing market

Another factor in the falling receipts confirmed by HMRC will be the stuttering market.

Data released separately by the taxman today show that property transactions got off to a slow start in January, with 101,170 residential sales taking place. That’s a small increase of 1.3 per cent year-on-year.

However, the total transactions seen in 2018 – around 1.192m according to the taxman – is down on recent years where in 2017, 1.223m sales completed. 

Last month the government announced plans to introduce a 1 per cent stamp duty surcharge on purchases by foreign buyers, though it claims this will not act as a barrier to anybody coming to live and work in the UK.

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