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Monthly Archives: September 2011

Highest August borrowing figure on record

UK Public Sector Net Borrowing (PSNB) in August was a surprise £15.9 billion. This was a rise of £1.9 billion on August last year and was the highest August total on record, and well above the market forecasts of just over £13 billion. So far this fiscal year, between April and August, total PSNB has totalled £51.5 billion. This is … Continue reading

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And so the contagion spreads

Italy has become the latest country to have its sovereign debt rating cut. Standard and Poor’s (S&P), the debt rating agency, has reduced Italy’s rating down one level from A+ to A. The debt rating is meant to give a signal as to how reliable the country will be in repaying its debt. Italy has a debt to GDP ratio … Continue reading

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Has Quantitative Easing actually worked?

 The Bank of England introduced the so-called scheme of Quantitative Easing (QE) in March 2009 and it continued until January 2010. This was an attempt to inject money directly into the economy by buying financial assets on the open market, largely government and corporate bonds. It was introduced because the price of money (Bank Rate) was not working sufficiently to … Continue reading

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Growth in the EU is “coming to a virtual standstill”

“Growth in the second half of 2011 is now expected to be subdued, coming to a virtual standstill towards the end of the year.” So says a new Interim Forecast produced by the European Commission today. The Commission noted that GDP grew strongly in the first quarter of 2011, but slowed down substantially in the second, and pointed out the … Continue reading

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Sharp rise in UK unemployment

Recovery, what recovery? Unemployment rose by 80,000 to 2.51 million in the three months to July, according to figures released this morning by the Office for National Statistics. This means that the jobless rate now stands at 7.9%. The so-called Claimant Count – those claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance, rose by 20,300 in August to reach 1.58 million. There was also a … Continue reading

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Our infrastructure is inferior to EU rivals say UK businesses

The Government must act now to attract vital new investment into the UK’s ageing infrastructure. Swift investment across Britain’s road and rail networks, digital, waste and energy would ensure we remain internationally competitive and kick-start UK growth, the CBI said today. A major new survey of 477 businesses, conducted in partnership with KPMG, shows that 58% rate the UK’s infrastructure … Continue reading

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The economic recovery is close to flatlining

 Economic recovery appears to have come close to a halt in the major industrialised economies, with falling household and business confidence affecting both world trade and employment, according to new analysis from the OECD. Growth remains strong in most emerging economies, albeit at a more moderate pace.   “Growth is turning out to be much slower than we thought three … Continue reading

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Fiscal tightening is endangering global recovery says UN organisation

The Trade and Development Report 2011: Post-Crisis Policy Challenges in the World Economy, released yesterday by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), argues that a shift from fiscal stimulus towards fiscal tightening is self-defeating, especially in the most developed economies which were severely hit by the financial crisis. In such a situation, a restrictive fiscal policy may … Continue reading

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Trade slows in major economies

Merchandise trade growth slowed across major economies in the second quarter of 2011, according to figures just released by the OECD. Total imports of G7 and BRICS countries grew by only 1.1% in the second quarter compared to 10.1% in the previous quarter. Total export growth slowed to 1.9%, compared to 7.7% in the previous quarter. China’s imports grew by … Continue reading

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