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 …

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 32 Comments

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

Posted in News | Also tagged | 16 Comments

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
Advert



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarDavid-1 29th Jun - 3:46am
    Let me just remind everyone that, thanks to the Liberal Democrats, at least 434 MPs are required to vote to dissolve Parliament before the country...
  • User AvatarDavid-1 29th Jun - 2:44am
    "There are some Constitutional lawyers saying that MP’s must now vote on whether to accept the outcome of the referendum." Yes, but these are just...
  • User AvatarDavid-1 29th Jun - 1:24am
    @Alex Macfie: I agree, though for somewhat different reasons. I think it would be better for Parliament to stay out of the matter, for two...
  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 29th Jun - 1:11am
    David I do not get your point as the issues are so different. I am a moderate on the issue of the EU, but would...
  • User AvatarDavid-1 29th Jun - 1:09am
    @Leave EU: Perhaps then you'd like to join the Liberal Democrats in advocating for a fairer, more proportional electoral system, in which those millions of...
  • User AvatarDavid Allen 28th Jun - 11:56pm
    “No one in the LEAVE campaign has suggested that EU people already living and working in the Uk would lose any rights to continue to...