UK - The Labour Party could extend its restriction on higher rate pensions tax relief to include people earning more than £100,000 (US$153,140), Gordon Brown suggested last night.
Labour's pre-election manifesto said it planned to reduce tax relief for the "best off", while chancellor Alistair Darling provoked outrage in this year's budget when he said the party would restrict tax relief for those earning over £130,000 per year.
But in the final Leaders' debate in Birmingham last night, the prime minister said he planned to include people earning £30,000 less than the budget figure.
He said: "Our four-year deficit reduction plans include a rise in the top rate of tax above £100,000, taking away pension tax reliefs for those above £100,000 at a higher rate and a National Insurance rise."
Hargreaves Lansdown head of pensions research Tom McPhail said there had been "widespread speculation" Labour could extend the policy prior to the budget.
He said, if this was official party policy, a further 304,000 people would be brought into the restrictions.
He added: "Clearly these days we can't be sure Gordon Brown means what he says. But given his form, I think it would be prudent to assume the worst.
"There are plenty of people in the Labour camp who've talked about this in the past."
McPhail said a person earning £120,000 could see their tax bill increase by £3600 under the proposal.
A Labour press officer subsequently said all the relevant spokespeople were in Birmingham and unavailable for comment.
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