A welcome boost for ‘just about managing’ families in Scotland

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Yesterday started with a bleak assessment by the Child Poverty Action Group of the impact of ongoing welfare cuts – specifically how the two-child limit on support, which began to be implemented in 2017, is set to push 300,000 children into poverty. But there was better news for Scottish parents later in the day, as … Continued

A tale of two Scottish economies

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Imagine two economies. One has just announced strong economic growth, well ahead of the UK. Over time it’s become more productive relative to the UK and unemployment is as low as it’s been for decades. Then imagine another, in which GDP fell two quarters ago sparking fears of recession. In contrast to record employment across … Continued

Scotland continues to be the odd man out in Britain’s post-crisis jobs recovery

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Scotland’s been something of the odd-man-out lately. Missing out on Euro 2016 was bad enough but today’s latest labour market figures confirm that Scotland’s jobs market continues to under-perform compared to the rest of the UK. The turnaround has been rapid. As recently as October 2015, the Scottish employment rate was 74.8 per cent – … Continued

The living standards challenge facing the next Scottish government

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The living standards challenge facing the next Scottish government This morning’s labour market statistics marked a milestone for Scotland: its employment rate has overtaken its pre-recession level, rising to 74.9 per cent. This is a welcome landmark in the recovery. But coming as it does, 15 months after England closed its ‘jobs gap’, also highlights … Continued

“An opportunity that must not be missed” – council tax reform in Scotland and beyond

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Scotland’s Commission on Local Tax Reform has today released its report – recommending the abolition and replacement of the current council tax system. Few would argue that council tax in its current form is particularly sensible or fair, so what happens next ahead of Scotland’s May elections should be of interest far beyond Holyrood. The … Continued

The SNP and austerity: how different are they to the other parties?

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Nicola Sturgeon gave a widely trailed speech in London earlier this week majoring on the SNP’s opposition to what she said was a ‘cosy consensus’ in Westminster on austerity. In providing a few new bits of information on the SNP’s view on public spending it helped fit another piece in the jigsaw that is the … Continued

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