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Monthly Archives: September 2009

UK growth better than originally thought

Revisions by the Office of National Statistics show that Gross Domestic Product fell by 0.6% in the three months from April to June this year. The first estimate had been a decline of 0.8% which was subsequently downgraded to 0.7% and now 0.6%. This means that GDP is now 5.5% lower than the second quarter of 2008.   What caused … Continue reading

Posted by Nigel Tree | 1 Comment

UK car production – a tale in two parts

There was a fall in car production of 31.5% in August compared to the same month last year, according to The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). In fact, output is down 44.6% for the year to date. At the same time, commercial vehicle output fell by 48.5% in August compared to the previous year, but this was the … Continue reading

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Pound falls after Bank Governor’s Newcastle visit

On Wednesday the governor of the Bank of England, Mervyn King, came north and the exchange rate went south. It was his first visit to Newcastle for several years and occurred after transport links with the capital had been recently re-established. In an interview with Newcastle’s Journal newspaper, Mr King said: “That rebalancing of the UK economy that I have … Continue reading

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UK job loss not as bad as earlier recessions

The percentage fall in employment during the recession has been less than a third as large as the percentage contraction in the economy. This represents a much lower ‘job distress ratio’ than suffered in the recessions of the 1980s and 1990s. Had previous UK experience been repeated it is likely that around half a million jobs would have been lost. … Continue reading

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Asia to lead the world economy back into growth

Developing Asia, which excludes Japan, Australia and New Zealand, is set to expand growth by 3.9% in 2009 and 6.4% in 2010, according to the Asian Development Bank (ADB). These growth figures have been raised from the forecast last March of 3.4% and 6.0% respectively.   “Despite worsening conditions in the global economic environment, developing Asia is poised to lead … Continue reading

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Construction firms collude to rig bids for contracts

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has just announced the imposition of £129.5 million in fines on 103 construction companies in England, which it found had colluded with competitors on building contracts.   The OFT concluded that the firms engaged in illegal anti-competitive bid-rigging activities in a total of 199 tenders between 2000 and 2006. The process was mainly carried … Continue reading

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Continued increase in public sector employment

Latest figures show that public sector employment increased by 13,000 in the second quarter of 2009 to reach 6.039 million. Overall, employment in central government increased by 21,000, whilst employment in local government and public corporations fell by 5,000 and 3,000 respectively. There was also an increase of 1,000 in the number of employees in the Civil Service.   This … Continue reading

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First annual increase in mortgage lending for two years

Lending for house purchase showed its first annual growth in July for the first time since early 2007, according to the latest Council of Mortgage Lenders’ survey.   House purchase lending accounted for 56,000 loans totalling £7.5 billion, which was up from 47,000 loans in July last year. There was an increase in the number of loans on the previous … Continue reading

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Unemployment continues to worsen, but at a slower rate

The number of people unemployed in the UK rose by 210,000 to 2.47 million in the April-June quarter. This was the highest quarterly unemployment figure since the three months to November 1996. There was an increase of 743,000 over the past 12 months in the numbers unemployed.. This means that the unemployment rate increased by 0.7 over the previous quarter … Continue reading

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CPI inflation drops to 1.6%

The government’s target measure for inflation, the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) fell from 1.8% in July to 1.6% in August. This was its lowest level since February 2005. The Bank of England aims to keep this measure of inflation within one percentage point of a 2% target rate.   The largest downward pressure affecting the CPI rate came from housing … Continue reading

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