It went sort of unnoticed, but the Chancellor signalled another massive blow to the finance industry in the UK on Wednesday. Standing in for the Prime Minister at Prime Minister’s Question, he said that he now plans a new levy on the subprime borrowing sector to help pay for more illegal money lending investigators.
In his answer to the very first question at PMQ’s on Wednesday, George Osborne helped to make our mind up on our future plans. We are now moving everything out of the UK come January / February 2016.
After the Chancellor’s 5 years in Office, illegal money lending has rocketed. In no small part to his regulation forcing legal lenders to leave the market, in addition to this, he himself cut funding to illegal money lending teams by a third.
The Chancellor now has a better plan though – his new Baldrick like cunning plan is to price more legitimate lenders out of business with a levy so that it can pay for investigators into the illegal money lenders that are growing because of his own regulation.
You could not make it up; the Chancellor has shown little or no understanding of how businesses operate. To suggest further cost increases on lenders, in addition to higher minimum wage costs of staff, in addition to costs towards work place pensions whilst at the same time setting a cap on how much they can charge is naive – nope in fact it is stupid!
It was the Chancellor that chose to ignore warnings of growing demand for illegal money lenders before he implemented the price cap, it was him that cut the funding to teams whose job it is to investigate illegal money lenders. Now he wants the lenders who stick to the rule to pay for those who don’t – Genius!
Forcing more lenders from the market will just increase the demand for illegal lenders. Someone needs to take the shovel from Mr Osborne's hands, fast.
We all know that the person who ultimately pays for any levy is the end user – in this case that would be the borrower. The public sometimes believe that increases taxes and levy’s come out of a special pot that a business has. This is of course nonsense; it just results in higher prices or a reduced service.
We have already decided to start Selfcert.co.uk abroad but now we have decided to move everything. From February we will be going back to business as usual with all of our other finance sites from the lovely city of Prague in the Czech Republic.
Genesis.co.uk will be a peer to peer lender, zero regulation. Quick Loans will go back to lending not just brokering, and at full uncapped rates that we operated with before the cap. This site used to employ staff in this country, doesn’t now. Genesis would have employed staff in this country, it won’t now.
There you go George, try sticking that levy on that!