QUIZ: Can you beat Alan Johnson’s knowledge

Done with the quiz” Here are the answers:

1. What is the current national insurance contribution rate for employers?    
12.8 per cent. Shadow business secretary Alan Johnson got this wrong over the weekend. He made a gaffe by claiming the standard national insurance rate saying was currently 20 per cent, but that he wanted to increase it to 21 per cent. Source

2. What is the current standard VAT rate
20 per cent. The standard rate of VAT increased from 17.5 per cent to 20 per cent at the start of this year. Source

3. When is the next Budget planned     
George Osborne’s next Budget will be on Wednesday March 23, 2011. Source

4. What is the deadline for filing your 2009/2010 tax return online     
Any outstanding 2009/10 returns must be filed online by 31 January 2011. If you submit your return after this date, you could receive a £100 late-filing penalty. And dont forget, 31 January 2011 is also the deadline for paying any tax you owe for the 2009/10 tax year. Source

5. What is the minimum wage hourly rate
For a worker aged 21 and over, the minimum wage is £5.93 per hour. This descends to £4.92 for workers aged 18 to 20, or £3.64 for 16 and 17 year olds. The minimum wage rate for apprentices is £2.50 per hour. Source

6. What is the Bank of England’s current base rate of interest?
The current Bank of England base rate is 0.5 per cent. The monetary policy committee will be meeting on Thursday (January 13), though, so watch this space. (Most commentators expect the rate will stay the same, however.) Source

7. How much is the UK government’s deficit?
The deficit – which is the difference between government income and spending in a financial year – was £159.8bn in the financial year 2009/10. This is equivalent to 11.4 per cent of Britain’s GDP (the size of the economy). General government debt, meanwhile, is a whopping £1000.4bn. This is the total amount that the UK government owes to lenders, and it’s equivalent to 71.3 per cent of GDP. Source

8. What is the average price of a litre of petrol?
Across the UK, the current average price of a litre of unleaded petrol is £127.77p, while the average litre of diesel is £132.08p. This compares to an average price of £120p per litre of unleaded petrol when David Cameron came to power. The price of petrol is at a record level, mainly thanks to a duty increase last week, which went up along with VAT, which is also levied on fuel. There is due to be another increase in duty in April. Source

9. What is the main rate of corporation tax?
The main rate of corporation tax for 2011 is 27 per cent. One of George Osborne’s main announcements in last June’s emergency Budget was that the main rate of corporation tax will be cut by one percentage point each year for the next four years, bringing it down to 24 per cent by 2014. Source

10. What amount can an entrepreneur claim ten per cent capital gains tax on?
Entrepreneurs can cover the first £5m of lifetime gains under the ten per cent CGT rate. This is another of George Osborne’s big measures introduced last year, and is up from a previous cap of £2m. After the first £5m of entrepreneurs’ lifetime gains, the CGT rate rises to 28 per cent. Source

How did you do” Did you beat Alan Johnson” Leave your marks out of ten in the comments section, below.

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