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Opperman hints at auto-enrolment via tax returns

The government may be able to use digital tax returns to extend auto-enrolment to the self-employed, according to pensions minister Guy Opperman.

Speaking in a Treasury Committee meeting, Opperman hinted at using Making Tax Digital (MTD) to introduce pension savings options for the self-employed in the future.

Opperman said:

"MTD is a massive project that is on an ongoing...

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Calls for apprenticeship levy reform get louder

Pressure is mounting for the government to reform the apprenticeships system, following recent apprenticeship levy statistics.

Business groups, including the Institute of Directors (IoD) and the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), are urging the government to address ongoing problems with the levy.

Apprenticeship starts were down 25% for the 7 months to February 2018 compared...

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Government consults on IR35 for private sector reform

The government has launched a consultation on off-payroll working rules, known as IR35, for the private sector.

It follows the reforms to IR35 in the public sector, which were introduced in April 2017 and intended to stop work that HMRC regarded as "disguised employment".

The rules are designed to make sure that people who work through their own company, but are in practice...

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Over-50s rethink retirement plans

More than a quarter of people aged 50 and over have altered their retirement plans following changes to the state pension age, research shows.

Retirement Advantage surveyed 1,003 individuals and found that 66% were aware of changes to the state pension age and 28% were rethinking their retirement age or income as a result.

Women were the most likely to have changed their plans,...

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Wage growth exceeds inflation for first time in a year

Wages have grown at a higher rate than inflation for the first time in more than a year, figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show.

While wages grew at an annual rate of 2.9% in the 3 months to March 2018, the inflation rate was 2.7% over the same period.

This marked the end of a pay squeeze that began in February 2017, when the rate of inflation started to...

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