The Autumn Statement refers to two different policies on employee share ownership that are contradictory but are being promoted simultaneously by the government.
The first follows from a review of employee ownership, launched by Nick Clegg in a speech earlier this year that talked about creating what he called a ‘John Lewis economy’. The Review, carried out by Graham Nuttall, set out a number of proposals that aim to increase the number and proportion of firms that offer their employees a substantial body of shares, or are indeed completely owned by their employees.
Just a few months later, the Chancellor announced at the Conservative Party Conference a new policy whereby employers would be able ask their workforce to give up key employment rights, including rights in relation to unfair dismissal, in exchange for shares worth from £2,000 to £50,000, which will be free from capital gains tax.
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