All eyes were on Finance Minister Arun Jaitley yesterday as he presented the Union Budget 2018-19. We heard the long list of complex financials from the horse’s mouth and we are now bringing you the budget highlights that will affect you the most—positively and negatively.
New women employees will now only pay 8% to the Employees Provident Fund Organisation (pension) as opposed to the 12%. Which means that the salary they take home will be more. In a bid to encourage companies to hire more women employees, the government will pay 12% employer’s share to the EPFO for the next three years.
The percentage of working women in India is just 24% as against 40% globally, so both these factors may improve female labour participation.
You may want to check out the list of all the things that got expensive this year. From perfumes, sunscreens, deos, diamond, silver, gold, and imitation jewellery, to vegetable and fruit juices, footwear, smart watches and mobiles, cars, vegetable oil, and mattresses and lamps. (Source: The Hindu)
All these commodities will be carrying a higher selling price from April 1, 2018, so you may want to stock up.
The Finance Minister announced that the UDAN scheme will connect 56 unserved airports and 31 helipads. The airport capacity of the country will be increased to handle more than one billion trips annually. What it means is that J&K, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and the Northeast will have better air routes, so you can plan more solo trips in the future.
There has been no change in the income tax slab, but the cess on the tax has increased by 1%. Which means you may be paying more taxes next year.
On the other hand, the government has introduced a standard deduction of Rs 40,000 on taxable income in lieu of medical allowance (Rs 19,200) and medical reimbursement (Rs 15,000), which saves you Rs 5,800.
Let’s say your income is Rs 3 lakhs per annum, which is Rs 50,000 more than the exempted limit. After deducting the standard Rs 40,000, your taxable income will only be Rs 10,000. You will pay taxes on Rs 10,000, not Rs 50,000.
However, for someone with a higher annual income, the income tax will increase dramatically because of the cess.
From April 1, 2018, the government will be levying 10% tax on long-term gains from stocks and mutual funds held over a year, with profits more than Rs 1 lakh. However, investors are exempt from paying taxes on gains made till January 31, 2018.
The other highlights from this year’s budget include a new health insurance scheme for the uninsured poor, Ayushmaan Bharat; reduction in corporate taxes for small, micro, and medium enterprises; and installation of CCTVs and WiFi on trains.
Are you happy with all these changes that will reflect in our finances? Tell us how it affects you and your family.
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