Tag Archives: chris giles

Labour’s VAT cut: bad economics and disingenuous politics

In the run-up to today’s county council elections, Ed Miliband has been taking to a wooden pallet in towns and villages around the UK, telling anybody who would listen about Labour’s plan to rescue the British economy by temporarily reversing the 2.5 percentage point increase in the rate of VAT.

Desperate, though, to avoid admitting this would involve a significant increase in borrowing, he’s been telling us that this would actually be a free tax cut because the economic growth that resulted from it would increase revenues by more than the upfront cost.

That unlikely-sounding claim was given short shrift by …

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Welfare: right policy, wrong reasons?

Many column inches have been filled with comment over the government’s decision to restrict a number of benefits and tax credits to increases of 1% over the next couple of years.

This piece (£), however, by the FT’s economics editor, Chris Giles, warrants a special mention, not least because it is makes some interesting points that nobody else seems to have done.

Here’s a (fairly lengthy) extract:

In any case, good evidence exists on living standards to assess the merits of restricting benefit uprating. According to the most recent year of data, 2010-11, the crisis has caused real household net incomes around the

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The Weekend Debate: Bank of England independence – an economic success story or a well-intentioned failure?

Here’s your starter for ten in our weekend slot where we throw up an idea or thought for debate…

The Liberal Democrat 1997 manifesto said the following:

We will turn the Bank of England into a UK Reserve Bank, free from political interference. We will charge the Bank with keeping inflation low and make it accountable to Parliament for achieving this goal.

Of course after Labour’s landslide victory in that election, one of Gordon Brown’s first decisions as chancellor was to borrow this Lib Dem policy and essentially transfer responsibility for monetary policy to the Bank of England.

Most Labour politicians look back on …

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 12 Comments
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  • User AvatarHelen Dudden 28th Mar - 2:05pm
    It should not have to be classed as a vote winner, a necessity is a better word. Those of us who have anorexic experience within...
  • User AvatarWill Jackson 28th Mar - 2:02pm
    I agree with Helen, this is very depressing stuff. I'd hazard a guess that the writer has no experience whatsoever of education, other than having...
  • User AvatarAlex Sabine 28th Mar - 1:29pm
    ...nail their green credentials to the mast" Sounds rather painful ;-)
  • User AvatarStuart 28th Mar - 1:24pm
    @Roland "No Stuart, the bulk of the finance is coming from the reduction in the lifetime allowance" Not according to this :- http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/mar/18/ed-balls-labour-pledge-cut-tuition-fees-george-osborne-labour-shot-fox The reduction...
  • User AvatarHelen Tedcastle 28th Mar - 1:18pm
    Hi Stephen, just caught up with your comment in response to me! I agree with your comments on liberalism and as we do agree on...
  • User Avatarstuart moran 28th Mar - 1:15pm
    Stevan Rose You may be right but I think it may be truer to say that we may have seen the last Conservative majority under...
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