A plastic bag Budget

Matthew Vincent, personal finance editor, says today's Budget was thin on major measures, aiming not to scare middle England voters with any changes to direct taxation. Instead he tells Richard Edgar of FT.com it focused on "sin" taxes on alcohol and inefficient cars, and possible measures to reduce plastic bag use. He says, with little room for manoeuvre, anticipated changes to national insurance contributions and stamp duty didn't materialise. He adds that the film industry will take a blow with a change to sole trader loss schemes, and that the clampdown on income shifting between spouses running a small business has been delayed.