Always think through the consequences, is the lesson to be learned by George Osbourne. As a result of tinkering with stamp duty a lot of urgent deals have been negotiated in the London property market.

The London property market plunged into meltdown yesterday.
The effects were seen in the rapid wake of the Chancellor’s bombshell announcement that purchasers using companies as the buying vehicles of £2m-plus properties would be stung by 15% Stamp Duty as from midnight. In London, buying via company vehicles is extremely common.
Within hours, London agents were reporting chaos, as deal after deal fell through. First to warn was Ben Everest, partner at LDG in the West End.
He said that there had been a ‘dramatic’ effect, with deals in the region of £2m-£2.5m being urgently re-negotiated downwards.