Brown woos big business
There were howlers in my hastily drafted initial budget blog. Here is my more considered view with - I hope - fewer solecisms.
The big point is that the corporate tax reforms, including the changes to depreciation allowances, are good for most big profitable companies - especially those which might consider relocating to lower tax countries.
The reason is simple: they'll be paying two percentage points less of corporation tax.
But the changes to the allowances and also the increase in the small-company tax rate means there will also be losers.
A small company that invests a fair chunk of its profits will probably be better off. But those that don't invest will definitely be poorer.
Among bigger companies, any business with lots of hotels or industrial buildings or runways will lose, as a result of the abolition of the industrial buildings allowance
There's also a redefinition of what counts as fixed long-life assets and what counts as plant and machinery, to crack down on companies that obtain generous equipment allowances on fixtures and fittings in buildings.
Broadly, if a bit of kit is nailed down, it can no longer be classified as plant and machinery. So henceforth it will only obtain long-life asset relief of 10 per cent (which is being raised from 6 per cent) as opposed to the previous 25 per cent relief on equipment.
This is where it all becomes a bit complicated and involved. That 25 per cent per annum relief on investment in plant and machinery is being cut to 20 per cent. So any company that invests in lots of equipment will be hurt.
And, as I said, any company that has lots of buildings will be hit.
All of that doesn't sound like good news for BAA, or some transport businesses, or energy companies and utilities, or Network Rail or the Royal Mail (and in Royal Mail's case, that's a potential headache for Government, as its owner).
And my hunch is that BT will also be quite significantly hit.
But what the losers have in common is that it's rather harder for many of them to base themselves abroad for tax purposes.
The winners are those businesses with fewer industrial buildings or which have significant net cash flows, such as creative companies, banks, assorted financial service providers, other service companies, retailers, pharma and high tech.
For many of them, if the subscription price of being a member of the club of British companies - in terms of tax payable - were to become too steep, it would be relatively easy for them to emigrate.
Today Gordon Brown has cut that membership fee and hopes the likes of WPP, Vodafone, HSBC and Barclays can be persuaded to pay their reduced British tax with pride and enthusiasm (or at least not to do a runner to Dublin, or Amsterdam).