How important was Brexit in the so-called ‘Brexit election’?

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Shared Growth

Anyone who channel-hopped their way through Thursday night’s election coverage will have noticed two things. First, pundits are very good at recycling and refining their reactions as they work their way around the various studios. And second, different channels established different, but seemingly equally plausible, narratives about just what on earth was happening. But one … Continued

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When it comes to living standards, geography matters

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A slowdown in economic growth and the recent return of the pay squeeze has focused attention once again on the extent to which absolute living standard improvements have stalled across UK households since the financial crisis of 2008. But the distribution of gains and losses matters too – especially in the context of a vote … Continued

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Time for a re-rewind on debt?

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Debt & Savings

Just like Craig David, debt made something of a comeback in 2016. Having peaked at 160 per cent on the eve of the 2008 financial crisis, household debt as a share of income fell to 140 per cent by the end of 2015. Successive increases in the first three quarters of 2016 took the ratio … Continued

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2016 was a good year for living standards – but families didn’t splash out

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Wages & Income

Today’s annual Family Spending release contains the usual wealth of useful information on household spending patterns. It shows that overall spending was largely unchanged in 2015-16 (at £529 a week) relative to the previous year, once inflation is accounted for. Indeed, having fallen slightly from 2006 and then increased gently after 2012, average household spending is little … Continued

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