Thursday 24 August 2017

Net Migration falls - The power of Nudge proven at last

Do you remember under the halcyon days of David Cameron, when the Government was obsessed by the concept of this book?

Which basically says, rather than be a pure busy body nanny state and tell people not to eat bad food, you can create incentives via taxes or social signals that overall will change behaviours. It seemed great, less money could be spent, the Government could still play a role a nanny, but in a less authoritarian manner - so perfect for Cameron's continuity New Labour governing style.

We now have a really good example of this, the vote to Leave the EU in large part about the concerns around immigration - check out some of these ONS truth bullets that confirm why people were indeed concerned:

"Last year around one in seven residents were born abroad, and one in 11 had non-British nationality.
Another dataset released on Thursday showed that more than a quarter (28.2%) of births in England and Wales were to women born outside the UK, the highest level on record.

Statisticians said that despite an overall decline in the number of births between 2015 and 2016, births to mothers born overseas increased by 2.1% as foreign-born women make up an increasing share of the female population of childbearing age.

Brent in north-west London was the local authority area with the highest percentage of births to non-UK-born women, at more than three quarters (76.0%)."

So we voted Leave, a big social signal. Here we are 12 months later an indeed EU migration has fallen and emigration has increased. A net fall to a still unsustainable +246,000 a year - still a new Norwich or Blackpool or Milton Keynes every year.

But the 'Nudge' has worked hasn't it - immigration from the EU is falling after we have voted to leave the EU. At last, Cameron and his acolyte Steve Hilton have proof that the ideas they put into practice actually work.


Nick Drew said...

always makes me despair, that these days 'Nudge' counts as Political Philosophy

whatever anyone says about earlier generations of politicos (up until Blair, I suppose) there were always plenty of them who thought seriously about things

nowadays, Gove counts as a political thinker ...

Anonymous said...

But what will be the effect?

* Lower house prices as we don't need to accommodate so many? Balanced by more people in negative equity if they've geared up esp BTLs

* Higher wages in areas of skills shortages but lower standards of service provision e.g. hospitals, nursing homes, farming.

Seems to be a bit of a curate's egg except if you hold to one of the two extremes.

John in Cheshire said...

If we hadn't been aborting babies by the hundreds of thousands a year for the past three or more decades we would have more than enough of our own people to fill the jobs.

Nomad said...

John Cheshire, random comment. Do you oppose IVF too?

Raedwald said...

Uhm, Don't discount exchange rates and UK housing costs. Coming from Poland to work in the UK when the £ bought €1.40 and 4 Poles could still rent a flat in London for £800 pcm between them meant migration pressure; the £ at €1.09 and apartments at £1,100 two years later make the UK FAR less attractive for EU migrants.

Polish nurses aren't leaving the NHS because they fear Brexit, they're leaving to work in Germany, nearer home and with lower living costs.

Bill Quango MP said...

Turns out there was no nudge. No tweak. No gentle lever. Instead a violent sabre slash to the value of the pound allowed the government's aim since 2008 to be realised.

Lower migration
higher exports
lower unemployment
higher inflation
Lower benefits
Higher interest rates

And it only took a referendum going 'the wrong way'.

CityUnslicker said...

BQ - not yet higher interest rates, but yes.

The Brexit benefit is amazing!