Who ate all the pie?

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Incomes and Inequality

You probably won’t be too surprised to hear that for a long time many workers have been receiving an ever smaller portion of the fruits of economic growth. But if we are to properly understand the ‘trickle-up’ tendencies of British capitalism we need to not only register the depressing headline but get under the surface … Continued

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A gloomy prognosis for Q2 growth stats

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Public Finances and the Economy

Next Tuesday the ONS releases its first estimate of second quarter UK GDP growth.  It may be a slight exaggeration to call it a ‘make or break’ moment for the Chancellor but ‘make or brake’ might not be a bad description.  After six months of no growth another three months of flat GDP would strengthen … Continued

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When rates finally rise, things are set to get nasty

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Public Finances and the Economy

A good recession followed by a bad recovery. Trite lines like this are often wide of the mark, but this one bears some truth. The fallout of the economic downturn over the last few years – though harsh – was less gruesome than first feared in terms of overall unemployment, bankruptcies and repossessions. The risk … Continued

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Haven’t I seen this revolution before?

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Incomes and Inequality

David Cameron’s public service reforms suffer from a serious zeitgeist problem. Buried under the detritus of the escalating News International scandal is the government’s long awaited public services white paper. Assuming you missed it, it’s all about the need for “narrative” and to demonstrate a coherent governing project. Senior politicians, and the commentators they talk to, obsess … Continued

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The 15p Chancellor? How Osborne could outflank Labour on tax

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Tax and Welfare

After a year in power, in the aftermath of a traumatic recession and with unemployment still riding high, the Chancellor needs not only to deal with the immediate economic predicament but also to chart a course to the next election. Economic and political cycles need to be aligned. It is already a commonplace in Westminster … Continued

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