NWN Blue Squared Resources:
news, views & accounting support

A  wealth of useful accounting information, helpful hints and tips, Unexpectedly Simple Guides, forms and generally interesting items from NWN Blue Squared.

With news and views on the latest financial and accounting trends, this is the section of the NWN website that offers the chance to sit back, relax and help yourself to whatever takes your fancy, or helps you get through your business and accounting day. 

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Up for discussion

The Budget 2017

Chancellor Hammond's 2017 Budget, now delivered in the Autumn, included a boost for the digital sector and R&D-based businesses, plus major changes in Business Rate valuation and timing, as well as investment in the construction and housing sector.

Family Home Allowance - an Unexpectedly Simple Guide

A new Residence Nil-rate Tax Band has been introduced to help reduce the inheritance tax owed on larger properties. But not everyone is a winner. Our Guide explains the ups and downs of family properties and IHT.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

May 2018 sees the introduction of amended regulations for companies processing and storing personal data of any individual living in the European Union. Non-compliance could mean heavy fines.

CGT Planning 2017/18 - an Unexpectedly Simple Guide

Capital Gains Tax is currently a political hot potato. But there are personal and business tax reliefs available on CGT - at least for now. Find out the details with this Unexpectedly Simple Guide to CGT Planning.

ISA tax rules explained

It’s well known that ISAs allow individuals to save money free of income and capital gains tax. But the tax rules are surprisingly misunderstood, according to recent research, so NWN offers some help.

Gender pay gap reporting becomes law

With the gender pay gap at an all-time low, new rules now means larger companies will have to publish details of pay differences between the sexes.

2017/18 Tax Tables

After the 2017 Spring Budget, NWN offers an easy to download card of the latest tax rates, including Income Tax, CGT, VAT, vehicle benefits, stamp duty and a whole lot more.

Flat Rate VAT rules are changing

From April 2017 certain businesses signed-up to the VAT Flat Rate may find the scheme less beneficial. We explain the latest changes and which businesses might, or might not, benefit.

Spring Budget 2017

For the last ever Spring Budget, the Chancellor decided to address the apparent tax gap between employed and self-employed through NI contributions, as well as ironing out some VAT wrinkles and reducing the dividend threshold for Company Directors and owners of shares.

Workplace Pensions - AE is having an affect!

With 2017 heralding the final staging dates for businesses not already signed-up to Auto Enrolment, the latest government figures show the scale of investment that's making a difference to employees.

Starting a Business - an Unexpectedly Simple Guide

From initial planning and market research, to understanding which type of business to set-up, keeping records and managing cashflow - NWNs Guide offers simple, basic advice on how to plan a new business and get it off to a secure start.

Autumn Statement 2016

Chancellor Philip Hammond's first Autumn Statement will be his last...as it's scrapped in favour of a Spring Statement and a full Autumn Budget from 2017/18. The 2016 Statement focused on infrastructure, stimulating business productivity, housing, and R&D investment for the tech & digital sector.

The NWN App is here

Don't worry, be Appy. The new NWN Blue Squared App is stuffed full of useful tools, news and contacts so you can manage all your finances on the move.

Beware late filing prosecutions.

Companies House is getting tough on late filing of accounts and confirmation statements. Prosecution could mean a criminal record.

Income security is vital

Income security for employees is almost as important as the level of income itself, according to new research. An important message to employers in uncertain times.

Digital accountancy or paper shuffling?

With HMRC drivng hard to reduce the use of paper, NWN CEO Nick Lawrence puts the case for a change to digital accountancy software for businesses of all sizes.

Finding lost pension pots

Some £400m in pension savings are going unclaimed because people are losing track of the schemes they have been part of. Now the Government is offering free help to track down those extra retirement funds.

Charities: Getting the reporting right

Competing for funds and maintaining public confidence includes submitting the right financial and management reports to the Charity Commission. NWN offers some basic tips on charity reporting requirements.

Spring Budget 2016 - an NWN Briefing

Despite gloomy figures for the UK's overall growth, the Chancellor had plenty of encouragement for small business owners, younger savers and a boost to individual allowances. There was less encouraging news for those seeking tax avoidance opportunities.

Dividend Tax - an Unexpectedly Simple Guide

From April 2016, the rules on taxing dividends change with the old Dividend Tax Credit being replaced by the new Dividend Allowance and a new tax structure. NWN gets to the heart of the matter with this Unexpectedly Simple Guide.

Autumn Statement 2015 - Key Points

The 2015 Autumn Statement and Spending Review revealed potential good long-term news for the economy as well as incentives for Apprenticeships and an extension of Small Business Rate Relief

Bags of tax

The carrier bag industry may be set to profit from the latest regulations, but will the UK's businesses be shopping around the UK for a competitive tax break?

ATED: residential property tax...for companies.

Annual Tax on Enveloped Buildings is a tax on UK residential property valued at more than £1 million owned by companies, partnerships or investment groups. However the way property is defined, used and valued is key.

How to avoid a dodgy music accountant

In her latest video, music superstar Rihanna threatened to chop up her accountant. Here's how to avoid a fatal relatshionship with your financial advisors

National Minimum Wage

The National Minimum Wage is increasing on 1st October 2015 with a National Living Wage being introduced in April 2016

2015 Summer Budget confirms orchestra boost

The Chancellor of the Exchequer used the Summer Budget to confirm a new tax credit for orchestras to accompany the spring boosts to the TV, film and video games industries.

NWN & Leanne help out in a crisis

Leanne Collins is the latest NWN Team member to win the B1G1 Award. She's used it to help make a difference to the Nepal earthquake victims.

Monetisation: making creativity pay

Guest writer, Will Machin, MD of Sunshine HQ explains how turning talent into money requires digital savvy and getting a 'business head' on.

Pop-in and buy

Creatives are tapping into the pop-up shop revolution, but how to make it pay?

Giving really works

NWN has been awarded a B1G1 Certified Giver status in recognition of long-term and effective giving.

Autumn Statement 2014 - NWN's full briefing

The scale of the UK's spending deficit left Mr Osborne little room for the kind of tax giveaways, but he still managed to produce a long list of measures. NWN Blue Squared offers an unexpectedly compact briefing.

Keeping the business beat

Top beatboxer, Faith SFX, talks business and how the music industry has changed the way musicians work.

NWN - Award Winning advice

NWN's accountancy advice to the Music Industry has now been recognised at international level with an major Award.

Tax drama? What drama?

Grange Hill and Hotel Babylon star, Michael Obiora, talks about tax, accountancy and his need to be organised.

Danielle's good deed

Danielle Mead has chosen to supply medical care for eight children for a year, as part of the B1G1 partnership.

Yummy summies

Specialist caterer Annabel Lawrence discusses her recipe for a successful business with a good accountant being a key ingredient.

2014 Spring Budget

Enhanced personal tax allowances, trusting pensioners with their own pensions, increased Annual Investment Allowances on plant and machinery and even good news for theater companies.

Going digital - a big accounting step?

NWN CEO Nick Lawrence and Xero's UK MD, Gary Turner, discuss the digital age and the need for accountants and their clients to embrace electronic change.

Square View in a Round World 9

A positive economic outlook, a buoyant music industry and some valuable lessons on networking are all part of the first Square View of 2014.

Paying the price of business

SMEs are finding the cost of running a business is rising but are not passing this on to their clients. Is there a solution?

Funding for training

Barking and Dagenham College are working with SMEs to provide training for staff funded by the European Social Fund.

Autumn Statement 2013

Generally a good news statement from the Chancellor with a boost for small businesses on the high street, the creative sector, young employees and a number of personal tax allowance enhancements.

Different corridors

Singer/songwriter Carrie Tree and her Manager, Ken Kutsch discuss the relationship between the music industry and accountants.

A Square View in a Round World 8

How a celebration of digital and all things creative turned into a study of how accountancy is having to change, adapt and find its niche.

Buy-to-let bonanza

Is the current buy-to-let boom all plain sailing for property investors?

A Square View in a Round World 6

On the up - economy, tax breaks for creative and construction industries and more digital innovation to make your accountancy quicker and easier.

Must-Do List For Contractors

NWN explains the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) and offers an unexpectedly useful compliance list for contractors.

The Budget 2013

Gloomy economic news from Chancellor George Osborne, but some glimmers of hope for the construction industry, SMEs and personal tax. Celebration but way of 1p off a pint of beer.

Survival of the fittest

SMEs need to specialise to survive in today's economic climate. It's all about finding your niche.

HMRC tax amnesties

The HMRC's latest campaign means honesty is the best policy on undeclared tax liabilities

Autumn Statement 2012 and tax rate changes

Chancellor George Osborne's Autumn Statement focuses on some help for businesses, individual and corporate tax changes, pension contributions and tax avoidance this year.

Avoid becoming insolvency road-kill

Insolvency figures are dropping across the UK, but insolvency practitioners believe this trend may reverse in 2013. Ed Niman looks at ways of keeping businesses away from the insolvency trap.


Even the 'Midas touch' of superstar Festival promoters may not be enough to save some high-profile events. Nick Lawrence discusses getting back to basics.

Minimum wage changes

Recent changes to the minimum wage means more money for employees. A challenge in difficult times for sectors using casual labour or apprentices

HMRC gets smart on smartphones

HMRC has updated is definitions and rules on mobile phones to include the latest smartphones and their treatment for tax.

A Square view in a round world 2

Cash is King! Yet many organisations view access to cash and maintaining cashflow as the biggest business challenge. Nick Lawrence offers some tips.

The protection business

From the smallest trader to the largest corporate, NWN Blue Squared offers five accountancy tips to protecting your business.

Gone phishing

An increasing number of internet 'scams' are appearing in the guise of financial or government organisations. How do you avoid the trap?

The information in this site is of a general nature and is not a substitute for professional advice. You are recommended to obtain specific professional advice before you take any action. All Rights Reserved.