More economic good news

Yesterday showed unemployment falling to 4.8%, the lowest since 2005. Wages rose by 2.3%, well ahead of prices. Price inflation fell back despite the Bank’s continuous assurance of inflationary problems ahead, though it might rise next year. Property companies reported increases in rentals, and gloomy valuers only managed to shave a little off central London capital values, where they had been forecasting a big hit after the vote. The workforce participation rate rose to a healthy 74.5%, ahead of the USA and continental countries. Google announced a major new investment in the UK. A major housebuilder told us sales were 19.5% up.

The money supply is accelerating into a a double digit rate of growth, and bank credit is also growing well. All this points to the UK being the fastest growing of the advanced countries this year, and indicates next year too should see good growth. It is high time the gloomy forecasters admitted their mistakes and hiked their 2017 forecasts.

The OBR and the Treasury also need to lift their forecasts. It would be quite wrong in these conditions to feed the Chancellor low forecasts for growth for next year. These would tell him the deficit will be higher, thanks to lower revenues and higher welfare spending. Instead the truth is likely to be very different. I am sticking with 2.2% for next year’s UK growth rate. Given the latest figures it is difficult to see why it should be lower.

Today’s retail sales figures, showing a record rate of growth of 7.4%, confirm the trends.

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86 Comments

  1. stred
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 5:37 am | Permalink

    The NOS is going to start measuring inflation including housing costs next year. This would have given very different figures over the past ten years. If inflation is rising and money supply, why is Mr Carney doing the opposite of what the bank normally does. He has form for creating a housing boom in Canada.

    • Hope
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:45 am | Permalink

      Countered by Carney fear stories yesterday and Hammond scare stories today that there is a £100 billion black hole. Why are these two allowed to continue to project fear? Why are they not shouting about the goods news like you, normally they would? I can only conclude it is with May’s blessing to condition us to accept EU light. No, no, no.

      • Chris
        Posted November 17, 2016 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

        Agreed, Hope.

      • NA
        Posted November 19, 2016 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

        I can only conclude it is with May’s blessing

        >
        So what will we do about it?
        A delegation needs to be dispatched to meet Trump and tell him we have a problem with the enemy within. He will help.

  2. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 6:04 am | Permalink

    “Yesterday showed unemployment falling to 4.8%, the lowest since 2005.”

    More remarkable since the media says there has been a 430,000 foreign worker influx. So, that is a decrease in unemployment despite thousands added to persons seeking work and despite the statements only a small time ago that recruiters were scaling down their vacancy lists because of “Brexit uncertainty”. Perhaps they may now feel free to advertise jobs again!
    December usually witnesses a further drop in unemployment. Labour and the SNP will need even louder voices to silence Mrs May. I suggest the 171 rebel Labour MPs who have more than enough to shout about and ample capacity in volume of mouth, but wait, they are now too far away from the front bench to make their pathetic noises heard.

    It was noticeable how in PM’s Question Time yesterday in Parliament the opposition parties of Labour and the SNP shouted down PM Mrs May when she tried to state the rate of unemployment. They are very afraid. Their interviews on TV show a marked agitation both of voice and body-language…never seen before except perhaps on one or two individuals. They are losing and have lost across the board and within their own parties.

    “Google announced a major new investment in the UK” Yes and today their Europe touring Executive is due to put Google’s case as to why the EU should not fine it massively for alleged monopolistic actions. The EU does not like American companies and it seems there is more to their objections to their business activities in general than wishing a level playing field.

  3. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 6:11 am | Permalink

    Correction: Google CEO Sundar Pichai will meet not today but on Friday the Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager and Guenther Oettinger over the anti-trust case.

  4. Prigger
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 6:17 am | Permalink

    It is to be hoped The Rt Hon Phillip Hammond, Chancellor, will cheer up a bit when he delivers his Autumn Statement on 23rd November and not pour sour wine into the upcoming Christmas punch bowl. These have been trying times for the people of our islands on all sides. We need lift.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:40 am | Permalink

      He should cut and simplify taxes hugely, cut the absurdly high stamp duty rates (that are raising less tax anyway) and finally keep the £1M IHT promise of about eight years back instead of Osborne’s ratting/botch. He should abandon quarterly reporting for businesses and cut red tape and compliance costs everywhere.

      He should cut out all the waste and all the absurd projects like gender pay reporting, worker on boards, HS2, Hinkley. He should kill all the grants from green lunacy, lagoons, PV, wind on and off shore and get fracking. He should cut government by about 50%.

      Just get the government out of the way, that is the way to get real and sustainable growth.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:42 am | Permalink

        Also get some real competition in the banking sector, they are getting away with absurd fees and margins currently.

      • Richard1
        Posted November 17, 2016 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

        There is a business and government delegation from Estonia in London this week who are visiting the Treasury amongst others. Here is a startling stat I heard from them: In the UK the cost of tax admin is c. £22bn = 3% of tax revenues. In Estonia the equivalent proportion is 0.07%. Why? Their tax system is much simpler (the Estonian tax code is 16 pages vs 24,000 in the UK post Brown and Osborne) and their IT works. We could do well to draw some lessons from these emerging economies who have had to make things work.

        • Mitchel
          Posted November 19, 2016 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

          Estonia isn’t a country with imperial pretensions,obsessed with it’s position on the world stage or wanting to be involved in everything with all the costs that entails.

      • getahead
        Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

        VAT at 20% is also a crippler.

  5. FlatWorld
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 6:30 am | Permalink

    Someone suggested JR on these Comments, cannot for the life of me remember who it was, that you should try writing a novel as a change from your usual scholarly books.

    But now, listening and watching MPs and various people across the Atlantic, it seems only the literal, only a 2D and not a 3D representation of reality, analysis and discourse is accessible. Our universities have either flattened the minds of our people or our people are incapable of rising above. It is like our novels are written by scientists in polarised light.
    Boris and Trump would understand one each other face-to-face away from the cameras and you too JR. But the rest better stick to Batman comics laid flat on a table and a Monopoly board to get from A to B.

  6. Caterpillar
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 7:06 am | Permalink

    Forecasts will be low and this will allow the BoE (as one of those unelected elites*) to continue with the policy of turning the UK into Japan … rates low-zero-negative forever. This limits the need to modernise from a debt based economy and keeps the UK moving in the direction of continued debt coupled with labour becoming a free not ecomic good.

    I hope Dr Redwood is right and forecasts are raised and The PM returns to putting pressure on the BoE but the chance of this happening is lower than the interest rate.

    (*and the Lords elite keep its power)

    • rose
      Posted November 18, 2016 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

      If only they would turn us into Japan – a country with a strong national identity, family ethos, and social cohesion. A country with minimal crime. A country where they don’t disdain to do all the jobs which need doing, themselves. A well-educated and trained country with high standards. And a country with a falling population. Above all a country whose government appears to want to preserve it.

      Who needs an ever increasing GDP if the population is stable?

      • rose
        Posted November 18, 2016 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

        Anyway their GDP did grow recently despite the population falling by a million so it can be done.

  7. Sandmartin
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 7:24 am | Permalink

    “…the UK being the fastest growing of the advanced countries this year…”

    Uncertain whether Spain is classed as an advanced country or an advanced economy but they reckon growth is at 3% and more. Though I guess Spain is like a Penny Stock on the AIM Market. If you’re priced at 10 pence per share and your share price goes up to 12p per share then you have “growth” of 20% but you’re still a tiddler. Well, there’s plenty of sand and sea in Spain.

    • Mark Watson
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      Not sure you can call Spain an advanced country. Almost all the extra growth is from increased tourism as most of the other holiday spots in Europe are too dangerous or overrun with illegal migrants.

      • Chris
        Posted November 17, 2016 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

        …and youth unemployment between 50 and 60% – disgraceful for a so called advanced economy. That of course seems to be the price to pay of being in the euro with such economies as that of Germany.

        • Hope
          Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

          41000 NI numbers issued to Spainish people last year,241000 NI numbers to non British citizens. Utter disgrace from a party with a PM who promised to cut immigration to tens of thousands. The PM who when Home Secretary has the worst record in history on immigration. When can we expect change, the fair nation she now spouts about, the NHS was never designed to have such a large artificial population or be a health service to the continents of Africa and Europe! What part does she not understand?
          NO to freedom of movement of people and no to the single market clap trap. We voted to leave in its entirety.

          NB: I would like to think Hammond and Carney had the brains to realise this despite their scare stories before and their present scare stories.

  8. SM
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    “Tristram, be a good chap, Redwood’s just written another damn piece about the economy improving, get out a leaked report to the government forecasting the apocalypse to the media, pronto!”

    • Hope
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:32 pm | Permalink

      No need, Hammond and Carney already at work nad have it covered under May’s authorization.

  9. Whentake temperature
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    Climate Change. Well my daffodils took time out a couple of years back, in the north of England, and flowered early. But for the last two years are flowering at the appropriate time. They’ve turned right-wing, obviously. Or, more correctly they’ve seen the light.

    No calculation was ever made, nor in anti-climate change alternative arguments, strangely, for the effect of sulphur dioxide in our atmosphere which is sunlight and warmth blocking and what would happen if you cleaned up the atmosphere leaving the burning sun to do its worst. Well temperatures are increasing, obviously. Opposition to Climate Change, need to catch up on science.And Climate doomsters remember…What came first the chicken or the egg?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      Indeed the climate alarmists and “experts” have been proved wrong. There has been no significant warming in for 18 years even over the last century the warming is minor and there is not reason at all to assume it will be catastrophic. In fact higher co2 and very slightly higher temperatures are actually an advantage on balance. The is no real science behind all the predictions of dire & catastrophic warming at all, it is a con. They cannot even predict the average weather for next month let alone the next hundred years. They do no even know all the inputs.

      Also:-

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/11763272/How-Arctic-ice-has-made-fools-of-all-those-poor-warmists.html

      http://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/antarctic-sea-ice-reaches-new-record-maximum

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:44 am | Permalink

      “No calculation was ever made” – As in so much debate about Global Warming you are presenting assertion as fact. This claim is demonstrably untrue. Several extreme Global Warmists have proposed a geo-engineering solution (as they see it) which involves spraying either Sulphuric Acid or SOX into the stratosphere to reflect sunlight and hence lower temperature. Some of them vaguely wonder if there might be unexpected downsides to this scheme. If you Google this you will find the relevant calculations relating SOX levels to temperature.

      • Whentake temperature
        Posted November 17, 2016 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

        “Several extreme Global Warmists have proposed a geo-engineering solution (as they see it) which involves spraying either Sulphuric Acid or SOX into the stratosphere”
        Well I’m not a great writer obviously or the impact of what I wrote would have encouraged you to think that it is the reduction of the use of fossil fuels producing sulphur and then sulphur dioxide and then sulphuric acid that has been a contributory factor to Global Warming and not what was intended which was part and parcel of the Green Agenda.
        As a by the way I may add ” “a geo-engineering solution”??? OMG Please spare us the waffle of persons on a gravy train to Green Resolutions.
        China, her pumping chimneys and Nature’s reaction to dry forests ( it sets fire to them ) have probably saved the planet from politically motivated fools

    • Anonymous
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:53 am | Permalink

      “What came first the chicken or the egg?”

      The dinosaur came first. Which was wiped out by environmental catastrophe long before man had made his appearance.

      • Edward2
        Posted November 17, 2016 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

        Or not
        Depending on your views

        • Anonymous
          Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

          I suppose climate obsessives will believe that man came first, such is their cognitive dissonance.

    • hefner
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 10:45 am | Permalink

      1952 was the year sulphur dioxide was starting to get the attention of scientists (remember the London fog). Then in the 1970’s a lot of studies were made about the impact of increased SO2 in producing acid rain with large impact on Scandinavian trees (SO2 plumes coming essentially from the USA). Then again, another large number of studies have addressed the role of SO2 as increasing the number of otherwise naturally occurring cloud condensation nuclei, which makes (for the same content of cloud liquid water) for smaller cloud droplets, which tend to make the clouds more reflective.
      So I do not know how you can say that “no calculation was ever made” as all these processes are parts of the representation of cloud processes in numerical models of the atmosphere, used for climate simulations, but now even used in some numerical weather forecasts.
      So Wtt, I am afraid you are clearly wrong.

  10. Gerry Dorrian
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    All this goes to show the extent to which Cameron, Osborne, Juncker, Corbyn and all the rest were lying when they said there would be recession, war, genocide and the breakdown of Western civilisation right after a Brexit vote.

  11. Lifelogic
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    Indeed and all this good economic news comes despite the lack of a sensible direction from T May and P Hammond. More damaging restrictions on buy to let lending from Hammond are reported. These will further restrict the supply of rental property and damage job mobility hugely. It he going to be as bad as Osborne, surely he cannot be quite that daft.

    Lady Thatcher, as PM, gave significant tax relief to encourage more rental property provision. What is needed is more houses & flats. The government restriction and taxes have the quite reverse effect.

    Many property owners borrow against existing property to build new ones. This will restrict and deter such activity, killing jobs and restricting new building or extending.

  12. Lifelogic
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    Still some good new with some new proposals to tackle the legal racket of whiplash and other claims. An appalling parasitic racket and fake industry for many in the legal professions. Another burden on the honest, productive and hard working.

  13. Ian Wragg
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    What about our esteemed Judge Hale telling all and sundry that Article 50 will be delayed for years until all EU law has been scrutinied.
    I thought Westminster was the final arbiter of the law.
    Seems judges can make it up as they go along.
    I can see we are going to have some rioting in the streets if common sense doesn’t prevail.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

      Ideally MPs should initiate the Address to the Queen necessary to remove Lady Hale from the Supreme Court, and even if that attempt was ultimately unsuccessful it would force her suspension while it was in progress.

      • rose
        Posted November 18, 2016 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

        Lord Hoffmann didn’t disclose his links with Amnesty International at the Pinochet hearing so the verdict was later set aside. The Law Lords were censorious about this, saying it was not enough for justice to be done: it must be seen to be done.

        Lady Butler-Sloss had to remove herself from the Child Abuse Inquiry because her brother had been Attorney General. Dame Fiona Woolf likewise, because she knew the Brittans.

        This Remainiac interest is far more pervasive and should disqualify the relevant people, otherwise justice will not be seen to have been done.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

      They will kill democracy one way or the other. Either with the unaccountable EU or with unaccountable judges. All cheered on by the lefty, greencrap, pro EU, propaganda pushing BBC (also unaccountable).

      Funded by voters under threat of imprisonment so they have to pay for the pleasure of being bombarded with absurd propaganda.

    • Anonymous
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 9:08 pm | Permalink

      The High Court judges had a range of interpretations and choices. The law is not formed of mathematical equations with one definite answer. To say that judges do not have political persuasions and think neutrally is far fetched.

      The people know what they were promised during the referendum and it has come as a bit of a shock that it isn’t so. According to the judges.

      The Brexit press were right to criticise them and I’m glad they haven’t apologised. If anything has caused people to vote Leave in the first place it has been shocking judicial activism interpreting law against the British people in favour of the EU and towards general leftism, always – so it is entirely predictable that findings will go against Brexit.

  14. Nerd
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    Cynical MPs, with calloused hands, will take the Leave vote and the Trump vote not as Mr and Mrs Joe Public perceive them. They will think it two events in the ordinary scheme of things which demand they construct intricate verbal sequences to explain and delete or affirm the run of things.
    It would be nice if they used these two events to mark a start. Start proper education! No, no, no, not the drone-like, learn by rote, ones who have parrot memory pass the exam ( ok for science students ). No, an extravaganza of proper education. Shown how to think. Well, ok such thought processes would eventually eliminate Corbynism. But it is overdue for being subject to delete-to-trash-bin for at least half a century. Nothing lost.

  15. Iain Gill
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    I think this is a very poor analysis of what is going on.
    You should read the professional forums I read every day, full of doom and gloom, lots of highly skilled professionals unable to find work living on their savings and not signing on skewing the figures, lots of people forced into much earlier retirement than they would prefer, lots of people being displaced into lower skilled work.
    Of the circa half a million jobs that have been created in the economy only 36,000 have gone to people born in this country.
    Re “A major housebuilder told us sales were 19.5% up” hardly surprising given all the state manipulation and ongoing ultra-low interest rates.
    And still we see masses of ICT visas being issued for people to come in with skills already in oversupply, and the outsourcers bringing plane loads of Bulgarian EU workers in every day and using them to replace Brits who they lay off.
    When exactly is the cut-off date when we will stop accepting EU entrants from the old soviet bloc like Bulgaria? It cannot happen soon enough? They seem to be racing in anticipating their route to work here is going to be cut off.
    What exactly are we going to do with the outsourcers getting rich brining masses of Indian nationals in to displace Brits? Is this our lot now, mass entry of workers from India every single year? Will it never end? Are the political class this stupid?
    You happy positive news is badly misplaced, and the systems setup to show a dashboard on the countries performance are not reflecting these realities.

    • libertarian
      Posted November 18, 2016 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

      Iain Gill

      If you must hang out on loony tune conspiracy sites I guess you will end up posting pure cobblers.

      As someone who makes a living with a very large business involved in the employment market I am telling you for a fact you are talking total rubbish.

      As you never believe me, why not find ANY employer anywhere and ask them if its easy to find workers at any level. Or just Google IT Sector of the page one hits at list 5 are reports on IT sector skills shortages.

      Or how about Google jobs in IT….

      Try reading THE OFFICIAL statistics from the ONS

      I notice you never post any links to resources or facts supporting your wild arguments .

      There have been 57,000 ICT visas issued in total

      There are currently 757,000 unfilled vacancies of which 38,000 are in IT sector in qtr Aug-Oct 2016

      If there are any skilled IT workers who currently can’t find work they are either

      1) Not looking very hard

      2) Like you their skills are actually out of date

  16. Anonymous
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    All indications (economy/house prices/rent/employment/rising immigration) seem to indicate we’re staying in the EU and nothing has changed.

    Stephen Glover writes in the Mail today that the likely Supreme Court ruling (thanks to an early speech by one of the judges) that the 1972 Act will have to be repealed and replaced will have us entangled in the EU for decades.

    The claim that judges are apolitical and that law is an exact science – with only one answer – is clearly absurd.

    We are NOT leaving the EU.

  17. oldtimer
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:52 am | Permalink

    You forgot to add “…despite Brexit” to your headline. This disqualifies you as a BBC scriptwriter.

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

      Useful to use the Guardian headline template:

      Despite Brexit but Brexit effect is felt in

      You can usefully replace Brexit by Trump if it is news from the rest of the world, like the BBC claim that bombing in Syria today was caused by Trump (because his election “emboldened Russia” apparently).

  18. Beecee
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    The BBC, in its usual unbiased way, reported the good unemployemnt news as being ‘in spite of Brexit’!

    It ended its piece by referring to the Productive figures as being not as improved as some expected and that this was a concern for the future.

    Nothing will change whilst its funding is guaranteed.

  19. Gareth Humphreys
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    If the economic news is so rosy, then why is there forecast to be a £14bn shortfall in public finance next year? I ask merely for information.

  20. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Off-topic, there’s obviously something badly wrong with UK mass media when they accuse Boris Johnson of insulting Italy over prosecco while forgetting that the same Italian made a very similar comment himself ten weeks ago:

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-09-04/eu-can-t-waste-two-years-on-brexit-paradox-italy-s-calenda-says

    “The more they are going to regulate and limit the presence of EU citizens in the U.K, the more we are going to limit the presence of U.K. goods into Europe.”

    Why wasn’t there uproar in the UK media over that unnecessarily aggressive comment from a minister of a supposedly friendly country which runs a goods trade surplus with the UK of about £7 billion a year?

    As for Italy still being able to sell prosecco to the other EU countries, yes, true, but most inhabitants of the EU live in countries which produce and export wine and they may not make up for the loss of consumers in the UK.

  21. Iain Moore
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    Though our media have been embarrassed on every prediction they publicised if we dare vote Brexit, that hasn’t stopped them from reporting every bit of economic good news with a qualifying ‘but’, and further predictions of gloom and doom. This they did on yesterdays numbers.

    I also note that they are still quoting the fantasy memo from Deliote , and still giving its fiction credence. In fact the BBC has been reporting that companies are ready to decamp from Brexit Britain, this information they got from none other than the boss of Deloite. They really have no shame.

  22. The Active Citizen
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    Another great diary entry JR. Isn’t it a shame, though, that you feel you have to write things like this?

    Where are the civil servants working in the press offices of all government depts? Why aren’t they talking up Brexit Britain? Across the globe (where I do business) all they hear are doom and gloom stories about the UK. As you spell out, the reality is so much more positive.

    • Jumeirah
      Posted November 18, 2016 at 6:59 am | Permalink

      Not allowed to. Boss May keeps the tightest reign possible but then, to her credit, she has more or less always said so -One Voice in due time. Across the globe they (traders?) hear the doom and gloom stories but they also look at the figures and how our economy is forging ahead (a sign of confidence?) and it is the “‘bottom line” that they take notice of and as business people THAT’s the bit that makes them sit up isn’t it?

  23. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    Well, now we are beginning to find out the awful truth about the catastrophic effects of Brexit, courtesy of the Financial Times today:

    https://www.ft.com/content/acb33786-ac16-11e6-9cb3-bb8207902122

    “UK faces £100bn Brexit hole in budget”

    Fortunately it seems this is only the FT’s forecast based on various analysts’ forecasts of what the official OBR forecast will say, which on their past performance will turn out to be wrong anyway, but suppose this is right and there will be £100 billion “hole” in the Budget as the FT headline shouts out at everybody passing a news stand, to be gleefully and uncritically repeated elsewhere, especially on the broadcast media.

    Firstly, that is not a £100 billion “hole” in just one year, instead it the cumulative “hole” over five years, average that out as £20 billion a year. So assuming that is correct, and the average annual government budget deficit over the next five years turns out to be £20 billion a year higher than projected before we voted to leave the EU, rather than being £20 billion a year lower as it could be if assumptions about future economic growth are too pessimistic, how does that fit into the bigger picture of the UK economy?

    Well, the answer is that the budget deficit would be increased by about 1% of GDP. In early 2009 it hit about 12% of GDP, as I recall; now it is about 4% of GDP, and that was expected to fall further over the coming years; but if the pessimistic forecasts turn out to be correct it will be about 1% of GDP higher than it would otherwise have been.

    As I have repeatedly said in the past the economic effects of our EU membership have actually been pretty marginal; there may have been a small net benefit but more likely it has been a small net cost, but either way it is marginal for an economy with a trend growth rate of 2.5% a year going back to the 1950’s and apparently unaffected by our accession to the EEC or the later creation of the EU internal or single market.

  24. Antisthenes
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    It is inevitable that at some point in the future there will bad news and whatever the reason for it will be be blamed on Brexit or Trump or both. It may well be true as change does not come without a cost. Winners and losers emerge. So when change is initiated it should be the benefit of doing so far outweighs the disadvantage. We know that Brexit is of the beneficial kind but comes with acceptable disadvantages despite it’s detractors because the evidence that proves it is is overwhelming for those who have the capacity to recognise it. Trump is an unknown as we do not know if he will translate his rhetoric into action. If he does then the only beneficial change we will see is less PC and more climate change scepticism. Both very much in need of opening up to level playing fields debate. His other actions may have a bearing on Brexit as they may slow the worlds economic growth. An opportunity for the anti Brexit groups to damage or scupper the process.

    We must be prepared for the bad news and the outraged victim hood that will accompany it. A tactic that leads to perverse shifts in the decision making process. Turning a storm in a teacup into a hurricane when simple perseverance and non deviation from the course set will only be a matter of weathering the turbulence to emerge into the sunshine on the other side.

  25. Richard Butler
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    Companies demanding a flow of immigrant workers are pulling the wool over our eyes. What they actually mean is they demand a flow of CHEAP immigrant workers, and those they do not have to train.

    I deal with immigrants through my business and the majority seem to send a lot of hard currency abroad. Furthermore, they often house share and thus are happy to work for less (children often stay abroad at least for a while).

    We have 1.5 million unemployed. We have all the potential workers we require aside from the odd very specialist skill.

    Japan and others provision thier own healthcare sector. This idea the NHS would collapse if immigration is curbed is just another liberal lie. PLAN for future nurses, get NHS recruiters into schools.

    Lets get back to readying our youth for the world of work, on the job training and paying a fair income.

  26. Peter Wood
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 10:35 am | Permalink

    Does this mean our ‘contribution’ to the EU budget will also be increased?

  27. Lifelogic
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 10:35 am | Permalink

    I am n0t sure I ever remember “a buccaneering Hammond of old” but Allister Heath is spot on. I expect to be disappointed by Hammond. He is already attacking buy to let lending again.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2016/11/16/the-chancellor-must-return-to-his-roots-with-a-swashbuckling-aut/

  28. Antisthenes
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    Mises Daily is rapidly turning me into a Mises news feed as reading it’s daily article I often come across one that has something to say about the EU. None very complimentary to the EU and all always full of insightful useful analysis. Today is no exception. It’s latest utterances which is about the French connection can be found here mises.org/blog/france-wont-be-following-uk-out-eu

    • ian wragg
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

      Antisthenes, I just read that blog and it appears to have been written by a pro EU teenage scribbler.
      If the ECB has to bail out France due too their left wing antics, I really do think the EU is finished.
      Le Pen is rapidly gaining ground and depending on who she is up against, if it’s the socialist candidate then the public will very well vote for her.
      That would really be game, set and match for Brexit.

      • Antisthenes
        Posted November 18, 2016 at 9:39 am | Permalink

        It will be against Juppe and he will win because the socialists rather than allow Le Pen to win will vote for him en mass. They have done it before to keep the FN out.

        • rose
          Posted November 18, 2016 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

          Yes, the Left voted for Chirac. And this time they would vote for Sarkozy if it were he instead of Juppe.

        • Antisthenes
          Posted November 18, 2016 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

          Probably a good thing. Some of their views are beyond the pale but not as extreme right as the left would have us believe, some are decidedly Marxist in orientation. A right wing government is the preferred option for France. At least it cannot be as bad as the current socialist one.

          • rose
            Posted November 19, 2016 at 11:31 pm | Permalink

            I think of Marine Le Pen as patriotic left of centre.

            Because she is such an attractive alternative to the traditonal left, they castigate her as “”far right”. An old trick the communists used against the nazis and fascists.

  29. ian
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Its all good till you come to the bottom line.

  30. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/11/17/deloitte-warns-it-will-move-business-out-of-britain-if-theresa-m/

    “Deloitte warns it will move business out of Britain if Theresa May cracks down on immigration”

    I was glad to see IDS suggesting that Deloitte had now shown themselves unfit to be awarded future government contracts, and I’d say that these comments from their UK CEO David Sproul just about puts the tin hat on it.

    Who the hell do these people think they are?

  31. margaret
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    Good positive news. I personally have not had a rise in wages for 6 years though!

  32. lojolondon
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    John, the Biased BBC is continuing with the bad news – no good news ever passes the threshold, unless it is accompanied by an “expert” who explains that it is early days yet, and we should remain fearful and disappointed to leave the EU. It is a real challenge to our situation because my less sensible friends who do not subscribe to honest, informative, blogs such as yours still believe that we are doomed, and I am getting tired of arguing with them.

  33. rose
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    Our population is also the fastest growing. We should be really concerned about this. How many people are on low wages with top up benefits? What is the GDP per capita? What is the wealth per capita? How many are satisfactorily housed?

    The people in charge are just living in the present and have no thought for the future – social stability, the environment, peace, prosperity etc. These things aren’t automatic and don’t flow from the size of the GDP.

  34. Iain Moore
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    In light of the strong retail sales figures which have shown a 1.9% jump from September and 7.4% from a year ago, we can expect all the media companies dusting off another ‘but’ as they search for another dark could to overshadow the numbers.

    • Iain Moore
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

      Sorry read it as ‘cloud’

  35. E.S Tablishment
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    “The OBR and the Treasury also need to lift their forecasts”

    As you have said before JR, similar models are used all over the world so they get a repetition of mistakes. The Financial world pundits…always better to see their faces rather than their written offerings, suggest they are in a tizwas. They are stuttering and are more slip of tongue than usual. They haven’t a clue what is in the immediate future. They have got over their hysterical reaction to the Referendum vote. Many of them realise our democratic decision is still blocked by a minority. But Mr Trump and what he may or may not do after discussions with his Party frightens them as they counted on making a fortune out of us via Hillary Clinton.

  36. Not an Economist
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    We have had a major, significant fall in the value of sterling. Yes that makes our exports more competitive but I would expect a knock on effect on prices and/or unemployment, at least partly dependent on how accommodating monetary policy is. And over the last few years its been very accommodating

    By all means let the OBR increase its growth forecast but presumably it should also reflect on the likelihood of greater inflation or unemployment. Growth next year there may be but its a waste if its drowned out by inflation.

    • Piper
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

      Stopping the 430,000 foreign workers this year from entering the country would still the unemployment rate in one go. Then we can sit around smoking our pipes, drinking a beer and thinking what else to do

    • Chris S
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

      Went to a professional Investment Manager briefing this morning.

      Their Prediction for growth in 2017 is 2.8%, just a tenth behind the US. Eurozone around 1%.

      UK Inflation should rise for two years up to at most 4% then fall back substantially.

      You can see these aren’t treasury forecasts, can’t you !

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

      The fall in sterling might well reverse if we get sensible economic policies. Anyway a 10% fall in sterling might only result perhaps under 1% in inflation as most is not imported or others in the chain will tax a haircut.

    • Edward2
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

      Companies I know are finding old customers are returning to UK suppliers after Brexit.
      These UK companies are getting busier and are recruiting.
      Anecdotal I realise
      And they are SMEs
      But it seems to be a trend in my recent experience

    • acorn
      Posted November 17, 2016 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

      The OBR is not allowed to speculate on alternates to government policy. That is, it can only project the budget based on publicly declared government policy. The snag is, nobody knows what the government’s policy is, post Brexit, not even the Treasury techies.

      Osborne austerity is starting to show up now in various sub-sectors of the economy. Take Prison Officers. Was 25,000 at the 2010 general election, now 18,000. But the headline is that government will increase said officers by 2,000; still 5,000 less than in 2010. This is how neo-liberal government tells you lies; they know the proletariat is too dumb to work it out; the mainstream media certainly will not help them.

      There may be a a £80 – 100 billion cumulative budget deficit by the next general election, the number crunchers would agree with that. But that is fiscal stimulus. And, that means that a lot more households will have someone in work and spending. It will cost the currency issuing government nothing.

      Remember that inflation, caused by a lack of private sector capability to supply the required goods and services, for the spending available, is a lot cheaper than welfare payments to households that have no job income.

  37. Shopper
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    Economic experts on television have been mildly surprised to extremely shocked by our economy in the last six months. They really did believe their own prejudiced assessments prior to the Referendum.
    Ten out of ten for honesty/
    Ten out of ten for incompetence/
    One out of ten for belief in their future assessments.

    They put some of the surprising sales due to people feeling chilly and buying a few winter garments. Never happens in winter does it? Hardly a great freeze with icicles hanging from guttering, By their suspect reckoning if we have two weeks of snow and temperatures below -1C we’ll become the world’s leading economy pushing China and America into the doldrums

  38. Bert Young
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    The knock on effect of our economic good news is the attraction of it to migrants . This produces a shock wave to our infrastructure problems and it must not continue . The figures out today of the migrants – from the EU and elsewhere , show just how much the situation is out of control . Things simply must not be allowed continue ; border controls have to be allowed to stop it .

  39. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    Off-topic, there’s a new post on this blog:

    http://doortofreedom.uk/the-eu-us-mras-on-conformity-assessment

    which I would like to be able to describe as “interesting”, but which is in fact very tedious, but which nonetheless seems worth mentioning because it deals with some aspects of the history of the EU internal market and current practical considerations in great detail.

    “In my last post, I examined a claim made by Nick Clegg that MRAs on conformity assessment are needed by exporters from third countries if consignments are not to be ‘impounded and checked at the EU border’.

    I pointed out that China does not in fact have an MRA with the EU on conformity assessment, and explained how it is able to satisfy the EU’s product legislation requirements in the same basic way as an EU manufacturer does, either through a manufacturer’s Declaration of Conformity or, where third party certification is needed, through local test facilities, which are in either a subsidiary or subcontracting relationship with an EU-based Notified Body.

    In this series of posts, to complete the picture as it were, I look at the second country named by Clegg as having an MRA with the EU and show that, while there are indeed two such EU-US MRAs in existence, they play only a marginal role in helping US manufacturers to export to the EU … ”

    MRA’s being Mutual Recognition Agreements, which allegedly play a key role in making sure that lorries bound for the continent with UK exports are not being held up and so end up being stacked right back to Peterborough, as one supposedly anti-EU commentator suggested could happen – a suggestion which inevitably has been keenly picked up by some of those who want to keep us in the EU, or failing that at least keep us in the EU’s customs union and its “internal” or “single” market.

    Of course where there is the political will to solve any such problems they can be solved, and if it will take some time to make the necessary legal and practical changes then the answer is to put transitional provisions into the UK-EU withdrawal treaty.

    It should be borne in mind that everything produced in this country should already meet the present EU standards, so it is not a case of having bring our exports to the EU up to the standards presently required but only making sure that goods destined for export to the EU will continue to meet its standards as they evolve in the future.

  40. Juliet
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

    Levels of immigration increased from the EU after the Referendum vote.

    Unemployment is still hovering at 1.64million mark, between July-Sept,
    a large increase of 50,000 East Europeans migrated from EU8 countries.
    EU8 Workers increased from 1,077,000 from 1,029,000 in 3 months.
    A year ago, the figure stood at 987,000.

    Guessing here 50,000 new jobs appeared by a miracle

  41. am
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

    I think the IMF will be up first for another revision. They do tend to admit their mistakes more timeously than others. But the UK based folks will be the last to do so. Too much to lose.

  42. Stickler
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

    Jesse Jackson is today calling for President Obama to pardon Hillary Clinton befor Mr Trump takes office.It is being pointed out, by others that she has not been convicted of a crime so why the idea of a pardon?.
    Every time one hears UK Parliamentarians banging on against Mr Trump and failing to mention his opponent is..well, Mr Speaker should ban them from the House for the duration of their Parliamentary term.If their Constituency parties had a gnat’s earlobe of authenticity they would deselect such MPs

  43. Christopher Hudson
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

    The liberal elite left, the evil empire, they don’t even hide it now.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/11/17/donald-trump-has-revealed-the-true-face-of-the-liberal-left/

  44. E.S Tablishment
    Posted November 17, 2016 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

    It seems outgoing or incoming Presidents of the USA are on record of pardoning criminal acts or potentially criminal acts of their predecessors.
    Jesse Jackson says Obama should pardon Hilary Clinton before Trumps gains power, I don’t know what he is talking about. Has no-one asked him what crimes he believes she has committed which would need a pardon? If Obama pardons crimes, if that is what they are, does that necessarily protect him from litigation if say Trump comes to power? Are we about to see an ex-President and an Ex-Secretary of State both in jail?
    Can’t think of a British equivalent of all this nonsense. Unless telling fibs is a crime.

  45. Fast
    Posted November 18, 2016 at 2:10 am | Permalink

    Donald J. Trump ‏@realDonaldTrump 7m minutes ago
    Just got a call from my friend Bill Ford, Chairman of Ford, who advised me that he will be keeping the Lincoln plant in Kentucky – no Mexico
    0 replies 3,992 retweets 10,574 likes

  46. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 18, 2016 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    Just to reveal any of my comments awaiting moderation.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 18, 2016 at 10:58 am | Permalink

      Three.

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    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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