Good morning, it's Paul here with the SCVR for Thursday.

Yesterday was so busy that I ran out of juice, so apologies for not updating the section about the Budget. In the end I decided to have an early night, and write up something first thing this morning.

Estimated timing - TBC, but I started at 6am today, so there should be plenty up by official finish time of 1pm. Today's report is now finished.

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Here are my notes from watching the Chancellor's speech. NB this is not comprehensive, I just noted down what seemed to me the main points, together with my comments below in square brackets. I urge you to look at the many sources online (newspapers, etc) which I am sure will have more complete & accurate summaries, so my stuff below should be read in conjunction with other sources. I've tried to focus on how the mini budget might affect shares in particular.

Mini Budget Summary

[Paul: Rishi Sunak sounds so much like a young Tony Blair!]

Recaps on what the Govt has done to date. Mainly political preamble, so I won't dwell on this.

GDP fell by 25%, and significant unemployment is predicted

Initial emergency response was phase 1. This is now phase 2, focused on jobs. Phase 3 will be in the autumn, focused on repairing the economy

Public finances - will be put on a sustainable basis in the medium term [Paul: i.e. not sustainable at current extreme level of deficit]

Plan for jobs - furlough was a lifeline, but cannot go on forever, that would be irresponsible [Paul: it's also a perverse incentive for people to be economically idle, thus is now harming recovery]. Furlough will be flexibly wound-down by end Oct. Skills fade if people languish at home [Paul: very good point, I lost my confidence completely when unemployed for 5 months in 1993]

Jobs Retention Bonus - new policy to reward employers that take staff back from furlough. £1,000 bonus paid to employers for each employee. Conditions - must be employed until end Jan 2021 minimum, paid at least £520 per month from Nov '20 tp Jan '21. Bonus is available for all furloughed employees, so 9m people = maximum cost of £9bn (£1k per person). [Paul: good idea, could prevent many redundancies. But, is this just deferring redundancies until Feb 2021? Should be a significant…

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