Tuesday, 8 January 2008

Updates and poll results

I really liked Ed's post on the fallacy of the US/UK wealth comparison, spot on Ed. Also Mark's review of the need for a citizen basic income is worth a read. Having not been convinced originally I am coming round to this ideaas the only solution to our broken benefits system, I see even 'a lefty' like Chris Dillow is too...amazing we can all agree!

Also poll result from last year voted the August credit crunch the biggest shock of the year, followed by the Northern Rock collapse. I was a little surprised the order was not reversed but not too much.
Anyway, according to the media the crunch is over. Let's see how long it takes forLIBOR rates to creep up again as the fear comes back to the banks. I see Citigroup is strongly rumoured to have a another huge write-down in the pipeline.

Finally, there is a new poll, what do you think will be the biggest event in business and economic terms this..just a bit of fun!


Richard Elliot said...

I voted for the Credit Crisis being the most significant event of the year. I viewed Northern Rock as one of the products of the credit crunch rather than an independent event in its own right.....

Forwards (particularly 6M) are generally higher than LIBOR at the moment, although have been edging down since the new year. Wouldn't surprise me if LIBOR rates rose a bit.

Steven_L said...

I must say I quite like the citizens' income idea, especially if it was paid weekly in case I piss my months salary up the wall after 2 weeks!

By the way, ed has gone guests only. Ed, if you're out there can I get added?

I got the new job by the way, so am in Bristol now until the end of March then London for 6 months.

Happy New Year all!

Nick Drew said...

Steven, good point: what's your game Ed - trying to shake us off ?

Good luck with new job ! Some lovely areas in & around Brizzle - even if it rains a bit

Anonymous said...

I don't think LIBOR rates are as important as some imagine. M4 money supply figures were much lower in October and November when compared to the same period last year. This suggests that either banks are unwilling to create credit or potential debtors are harder to find. The former seems more likely, which implies that banks aren't keen on creating more debt even if they claim to be offering better rates than they were.

My guess is you can get credit at good rates - but only if you have a solid gold guarantee of prompt repayment. Companies that are struggling as a result of exchange rate fluctuations making trading more difficult need not apply for interim financing.

The UK M4 money supply figure to be issued about 19th Jan would be an interesting one to watch.

My guess is that Darling is only being kept on as Brown's puppet anyway - notice how Brown was talking as if he was still running the economy on the Andrew Marr show. Darling will be kept there indefinitely, I think. No one else wants the job, and since Brown is running the show there wouldn't be a change in direction anyway. If Darling quits it will be in a rage.

China stock exchange could go into meltdown. I think there is a good chance of both UK recession and China meltdown this year. In fact I think they are both inevitable.
I'm off to the Far East next week so I will see what my inscrutable friend are up to at first hand. Playing "spot the braincell" probably.

I don't think Spain will exit the Euro. Enormous amounts of EU money have been poured into Spain in an effort to prevent the military taking over and imposing a Facist dictatorship. Spains position within the EU is bought and paid for. I think one of the newest members could quit, but it will take time. They will reach a point where the pain caused by being in the one-size-fits all Eurozone outweighs any benefits to being in the EU.

On the subject of benefits, I am not a big fan of benefits being paid as cash. Why should people dependent on other peoples money be free to spend it on fags/alcohol/drugs/loose women/gambling etc. often at the expense of their own children? Give them (healthy) food vouchers and pay their housing benefit direct to the landlord. There's only so much fun you can have with a head of brocolli.

Mark Wadsworth said...

Thanks for link.

RSF, cash is always better than 'free' goods and services.

Hence my enthusiasm for taxpayer-funded health and education vouchers. As to housing benefit, part of my cunning plan (follow the link) is to scrap it and have Workfare jobs instead (the CBI I suggested only replaces cash benefits like IS, JSA, IB, maternity pay etc).

Whispering Walls said...

If anyone's leaving the Euro, my money's on Italy. I reckon China will have a major post-Olympic hangover and commodity prices will tumble.

Old BE said...

I am having some "issues" which is why I don't want the blog to show up to a specific group of people. I shall happily "invite" you all to read it, just send me your email addresses to edclarkeblog@yahoo.co.uk

Old BE said...

As Richard says, NR is a symptom. The economy is in free-fall and the latest bad news stories are just a symptom of that. M+S had a terrible Christmas because consumers have seen the writing on the wall.

Interest rates need to fall and fast, but I don't think it will stave off a serious recession.

Anonymous said...

Bad for M&S for sure Ed - espcially when sales have fallen 2% against a backdrop of RPI at 4.2%. Not surprising that M&S got an 18% hammering. What is surprising is the FTSE100 didn't fare so badly - are they pricing in the realities of a High Street in severe recession with a knock on effect to the whole supply chain? My guess is no - which means the realities could force themselves onto the stock market rather suddenly later in the year.

I have a feeling in my water that the stock market crash might happen sometime this month, but in any case by July.

hatfield girl said...

WW, would you say why Italy might be leaving the euro, should you have a moment?

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