Newspaper headlines: Brexit impact, Budget unpacked and 'Suzy cop's blunders'

By BBC News

  • Published

The papers are still unpicking and unpacking the Budget - and the Daily Telegraph says it has found a "stealth tax on middle England".

It says the small print shows that a rise in national insurance will wipe out half of the income tax cuts which Philip Hammond unveiled.

The Daily Mail says the announcement of the cuts was "one of the most dramatic moments" of the chancellor's speech - but he failed to mention the higher national insurance contributions.

Image source, Getty Images

A wide range of other Budget topics are also examined.

The Independent's digital edition says Mr Hammond is facing a backlash for failing to find the £3bn urgently needed to repair crumbling hospital buildings.

The Daily Mirror highlights the criticism of the chancellor by teachers, with the headlines "Must Do Better" and "You dunce, Hammond".

'High stake gamble'

Meanwhile, the Financial Times reports US businesses fear the proposed 2% tax on the UK revenues of big internet groups sets a "dangerous precedent". It says the US Chamber of Commerce is among groups which have attacked the levy.

But the FT is among papers which support it, saying Philip Hammond is right to highlight the weakness of the global system which has let multinationals keep their tax bills down.

The Guardian agrees that "a licence to print money must not be a licence to avoid tax".

An editorial in the Times calls the chancellor's plan a "high-stakes gamble" designed to force a new international agreement on the issue. But the paper warns that if it fails, and President Trump retaliates, the global system could fragment further.

There is focus, too, on Labour's Budget response - particularly John McDonnell's promise in a BBC interview that he would keep Mr Hammond's tax cut for higher earners.

The Mail speaks of chaos, saying the party is at war, while the Guardian says his comments sparked a backlash.

The Sun calls Labour "shambolic" for first opposing a tax cut for the rich then saying they would keep it. But it adds that Mr McDonnell is right on this one, as Labour needs to attract aspirational voters who are caught up in the higher tax bracket.

The Guardian leads with a warning from the ratings agency Standard and Poor's that leaving the EU without a deal could tip the UK into recession.

It says it is the latest of a "welter" of reports suggesting no-deal would be a serious blow to the UK economy.

The Daily Mail also picks up the warning in its editorial. It says the message is clear for Brexiteers that if they sabotage Theresa May's plans, they imperil the future prosperity of the nation.

Jangle nerves

Elsewhere, the Financial Times says Jeremy Hunt's plan to ask more business chiefs to become diplomats will "ruffle feathers" at the Foreign Office.

Image source, Getty Images

The foreign secretary is to say that some ambassador roles should be opened to applicants outside the civil service but the the FT thinks it will "jangle nerves" in Whitehall about the prospect of a US-style system of political appointments.

Ukulele revival

Finally, the Times brings news which it says might have pleased George Formby - but not musical traditionalists.

Image caption,
George Formby - ukulele star

It says the popularity of the ukulele among schoolchildren has risen sharply, while the French horn, double bass and trombone are becoming "endangered".

The head of the Royal Philharmonic, which commissioned the research, says it shows more needs to be done to engage children with a range of instruments, adding there are no plans to rework Mahler and Beethoven for a 70-piece ukulele orchestra.