Autumn Statement will 'help a bit but it's not enough' says Denbighshire nail business owner

  • ITV Wales spoke to Charlotte Edmonds who runs a local nail business

Welsh business owners who've been struggling since the pandemic and cost of living crisis were looking for sweeteners in today's Autumn Statement.

But after the much-awaited announcement, nail technician Charlotte Edmonds from Denbighshire says the announcement "will help a bit, but it's not enough".

Ms Edmonds runs her own business but has "taken up another job" as "she can't afford to just make money from her business anymore".

Charlotte said: "I know a lot of girls that were working here and had to take other jobs and work in care homes and retail work but it's not what we want to be doing."

When asked will the new budget help her, she added: "It will help a bit but it's not enough.

"It's not bringing people to our door and it's not bringing me clients. Nails? People don't want to spend money on it."

Over 211,000 people are self-employed in Wales according to Census figures for 2021.

The chancellor has announced that they will no longer have to pay Class 2 National Insurance. It is being abolished with state pension entitlements maintained and will save workers £3.15 per week.

In one of the biggest reforms of the tax system, Jeremy Hunt also said Class 4 National Insurance would be cut by 1%, meaning workers will pay 8% on profits between £12,570 and £50,270.

ITV Wales' cost-of-living correspondent Carole Green spoke to hairdresser Steve Johnston

Hairdresser Steve Johnston from Prestatyn has been in business for over 35 years, and says the chancellor's decision to reduce National Insurance will put more money in young people's pockets.

He said: "National Insurance is going down and minimum wage is going up.

"Believe it or not, as a business owner, you don't want that sometimes. But it gives the younger people the opportunity to earn more and spend more.

"I think it's savvy spending, cutting back. No waste which is really important and it's really being there for your clients."

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced a number of tax cuts in his autumn statement. Credit: PA

The UK Government wants to get Benefits to provide a lifeline to people who are on low incomes, facing additional high costs or have health issues which impact their day-to-day lives.

It also said today anybody who has been unemployed for 18 months will lose their full benefits unless they take reasonable steps to search for work - to comply with Job Centre support.

The aim is to increase the number of people in the UK workforce by 200,000.

The Chancellor has described the changes as the "biggest reform to the welfare system since the introduction of Universal Credit in 2012" and "a combination of carrot and stick".

The most commonly claimed benefit in Wales is Universal Credit - more than 293,422 people were receiving it as of May 2023.

Cardiff has the highest number of people receiving it.

Ceredigion has the lowest number of people receiving Universal Credit.

Katie Dalton from Cymorth Cymru welcomed the move that the "local housing allowance has been increased".

She said: "This means that many more people will be able to afford their rent and avoid homelessness.

"Also, people who are in temporary accommodation will be able to find an affordable home to rent. We're also pleased that the benefits will be increased in line with the inflation as of September."

However, Katie raised concerns about the sanctions and punishments that are being talked about for the people who are not at work"

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