Less than 50% of finance directors believe the corporate tax burden is too heavy for small businesses in the UK. The results of this week's Big Question survey, conducted by Accountancy Age and Reed Accountancy Personnel, showed FDs are split over corporate tax. Many supported the belief that the tax burden is one of the 'lowest in the developed world'. Only 19% of FDs said the burden was 'definitely' too heavy while 23% said it was 'probably' too heavy. But just 11% said it 'definitely' was not, with 27% in support saying it was 'probably not' too heavy. The other 20% were neutral. Gordon Brown's March Budget announced cuts in corporation tax to 20% for small companies and introduced a 10% rate for businesses with profits up to #10,000. 'The tax burden is remarkably low compared to Europe and the US,' said Nick Rand, FD at Link Research, reflecting the opinion of many of the 236 FDs surveyed. David Collins, FD at outfitters Gieves and Hawkes, said: 'There are sufficient tax-planning opportunities to prevent this being a major problem and recent enterprise incentives will also be helpful. 'The administrative burden imposed by government regulation is more of an issue for small businesses.' But some FDs issued dire warnings and called for government assistance. Paresh Samat, FD at legal consultancy SBJ ESS, said 20% was 'high' given there was 'very little help from the government.' He said: 'We are seeing more and more small businesses and shops closing all the time. I am sure a little help from the government will go a long way.'
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