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Putting the 2024 Spring Budget in context

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In this briefing note, we put the decisions in the Spring Budget 2024 in context, discussing how the economic outlook has changed, what that means for the public finances, and how the policy decisions taken at the Budget will affect living standards in both the short and the medium term.

In too deep?

The impact of the cost of living crisis on household debt

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Hard economic times and rising interest rates have brought a renewed focus on household debt in recent years, with concerns that more and more families could find themselves overwhelmed by the burden of debt. So this briefing note takes a closer look at the use of consumer debt (such as credit cards, personal loans and … Continued

Pressure on pay, prices and properties

How families were faring in October 2023

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Two years into the cost of living crisis, inflation has finally turned a corner. The headline rate of CPI inflation has fallen from its October 2022 peak of 11.1 per cent to 4.6 per cent in October 2023, and the Prime Minister has been able to say that his target of halving inflation in 2023 … Continued

A pre-election Statement

Putting the Autumn Statement 2023 in context

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In this briefing note, we put the decisions in the 2023 Autumn Statement in context, discussing how the economic outlook has changed, what that means for the public finances, and how the policy decisions taken will affect living standards in both the short and the medium term.

A tale of two cities (part 2)

A plausible strategy for productivity growth in Greater Manchester and beyond

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Few would disagree that the UK has a significant productivity problem, or fail to recognise that the poor performance of the nation’s largest cities outside the capital contribute to that situation. As the Economy 2030 Inquiry has made clear, the productivity of our largest cities lags the UK average, bucking the global trend for bigger … Continued

A tale of two cities (part 1)

A plausible strategy for productivity growth in Birmingham and beyond

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After the success of the Commonwealth games in 2022, Birmingham is now in the news for the wrong reasons. Financial difficulties facing the City Council culminated in a formal declaration on 5 September 2023 that Britain’s largest local authority was, in effect, bankrupt. But the understandable short-term focus on the council’s financial woes must not … Continued

Cutting the cuts

How the public sector can play its part in ending the UK’s low-investment rut

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Britain is a low investment nation. Worse, it has now been one for decades. Total investment as a share of GDP has consistently been below the average of other rich countries for decades. This century, the UK has consistently (in all but two years) been in the bottom 10 per cent of countries in the … Continued

We’re going on a growth Hunt

Putting the 2023 Spring Budget in context

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This report examines the economic backdrop to Budget 2023, and assesses whether the Chancellor has successfully delivered on his central objective of boosting growth through higher employment and business investment.

New Budget, same problems

Spring Budget preview

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In our Spring Budget preview slidepack, we assess the economic outlook ahead of Jeremy Hunt’s Spring Budget on March 15th, and explore the policy choices facing the Chancellor in three key areas: cost-of-living support, public sector pay and boosting growth. We find that there is finally some good news for the Chancellor in the short … Continued

Mind the (credibility) gap

Autumn Statement preview

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In our Autumn-Statement preview slidepack, we present new analysis that explores the economic outlook ahead of the Autumn Statement on 17 November, and the critical decisions that the new Prime Minister and Chancellor must make. With the latest political turmoil triggered by attempts to completely rewrite economic policy, Rishi Sunak and Jeremy Hunt are under … Continued

Living pensions

An assessment of whether workers’ pension saving meets a ‘living pension’ benchmark

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Auto-enrolment has been successful in increasing pension saving participation among workers, especially those on lower incomes. However, given the improvements in take-up, the next pressing concern is whether workers are saving enough to deliver an adequate standard of living in retirement. A ‘Living pension’, parallel to the ‘Living wage’ could help us find the answer. … Continued

Catch 2022

Spring Statement 2022 preview

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Ahead of the 2022 Spring Statement, we preview the economic and fiscal outlook and discuss the key decisions that the Chancellor will face. The Chancellor comes into the Spring Statement with good news since the Autumn. The strongest peacetime growth in a century means the economy is around half a per cent larger, and around … Continued

Housing Outlook Q4 2021

The impact of higher inflation on social renters’ housing costs

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Welcome to the final Housing Outlook of 2021.1 Times are tough for many at present, as prices rise and Omicron puts the UK’s tentative economic recovery in jeopardy. In this quarter’s spotlight we assess the living standards prospects of social renters, and in particular consider what soaring inflation means for their housing costs as they … Continued

Briefing note cover - living wage uk

Hope to buy

The decline of youth home ownership

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This briefing note explores how the home ownership fortunes of those aged 25 to 34 have changed over time. Owning one’s home is an enduring preference for the majority of families in the UK, but today’s young people face a more serious set of hurdles to overcome than previous generations if they want to turn … Continued

Housing Outlook Q3 2021

The effect of transaction tax holidays on house prices

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Welcome to Housing Outlook Q3 2021. In this spotlight we turn our attention once again to the uncanny performance of house prices over the past year. In particular, we focus on the effect of transaction tax holidays across the UK. Introduced to stimulate the housing market in July last year, the Scottish and Welsh transaction … Continued

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