Greg calls for Stamp Duty reform

Following the Spring Statement, Greg calls on the Treasury to take action on Stamp Duty after forecasts deteriorate significantly since October. In Chelsea and Fulham, the number of transactions have fallen by 31% since the 2014-15 reforms.

Hansard, 13 March 2019

Greg Hands (MP for Chelsea and Fulham): I warmly welcome the big improvements in the public finances, particularly those as a result of the last spending review in 2015, but the Chancellor has a problem with stamp duty. Today’s report says that the forecast has “deteriorated significantly” since October, when it was already £4 billion short. Receipts fell 9.8% in 2018, which is a new £2.7 billion shortfall in the scorecard. Transactions in my constituency are down 31% since the reforms. That is something he will need to look at and propose reforms for in due course, perhaps in November. Would he like to comment on the latest deteriorating numbers?

Philip Hammond (Chancellor of the Exchequer): Yes. My right hon. Friend—perhaps unsurprisingly, given his constituency—is very interested in these issues, and I would be happy to meet him to go through the numbers. There are a number of moving parts underneath the headline number. Stamp duty in Wales has been devolved, which takes a significant chunk out of the total number. There is an overall slowdown in the market, which has an effect. We have also exempted first-time buyer purchases from stamp duty, which is a considerable chunk of the reduction he refers to, but I would be happy to talk him through the details.