The world recovery will be fine

There are many fears and alarms expressed about the state of various economies around the world. The curious thing is in recent years none of these has come true. The world economy has continued to grow at a modest pace, with contributions from all the advanced countries led by the US and UK growth rates. China too has kept a steady growth of over 6% going, with many critics claiming it is about to end. This year we may also get some turnround in Brazil and less of a drag from the oil and commodity based economies which suffered in recent past years from low oil and commodity prices.

The background with the Euro area continuing to create extra money and buying up sovereign bonds, Japan doing the same, and the persistence of ultra low interest rates outside the USA, is favourable for more growth. It is true there has been an uptick in US, UK and Euro area inflation this year. This owes much to the higher oil price, aided by some Chinese price rises on exported goods to reflect the higher input prices they are paying for energy and raw materials. This may well abate later this year, as oil and commodity prices have been weaker recently. Higher inflation has not so far impeded reasonable growth in consumer spending in all these affected areas.

Mr Trump’s new found ability to get a Healthcare reform through the House of Representatives means he may be able to get through some reflation as well. He still has to get the Healthcare Bill through the Senate, who may wish to amend it and cause difficulties. Getting some kind of healthcare reform through is an important first step prior to tax cuts which will be easier to achieve if healthcare reform delivers some expenditure savings. Serious tax cuts in the USA would power more growth, which would benefit the rest of us as well.

Promoted by Fraser McFarland on behalf of John Redwood, both at 30 Rose Street Wokingham RG40 1XU

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62 Comments

  1. Lifelogic
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 5:57 am | Permalink

    Davis also went on about May industrial strategy. I assume he means, prices and wages control, expensive green crap energy, gender pay reporting, enforced pensions and aprenticships regardless of the circumstances, vast over regulation of everything and vast over taxation. Plus state monopolies in Heath and Education, dysfunctional banks and huge bias and interference in the transport policy. Also extra absurd extra taxes on landlords and thus tenants.

    The industrial strategy should be to cut taxes, cut the size of the state and get it out of the damn way dear. What does a vicar’s daugher and Oxford geography graduate, who has (I understand) never really worked in industry know about it she should ask herself?

    Still better than Corbyn, just I suppose.

  2. alan jutson
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 6:03 am | Permalink

    The squeeze will surely eventually come when interest rates start to rise and thus really affect those with large personal borrowings, who will then have much less disposable income to spend.

    For the past 8 years people have been living with historically low false interest rates.

    • Anonymous
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

      I’ll believe it when I see people take flasks to work rather than queueing ten deep to pay three quid for a coffee !

      (In tax avoiding shops that Amber Rudd deems that we need visas to operate.)

  3. Lifelogic
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 6:05 am | Permalink

    On Question Time the other night someone asked a sensible question about why the NHS was so damn inefficient, incompetent and bady run. Well this is what government do to almost everything they run. You have paid your taxes already so you get what you are given or not given.

    Davis went on about how fewer people went privately now than under Blair. This doubless as the current government tax you four times if you dare to. Once for others, once in taxes on your premium, once for yourself then 12% IPT on top of your insurance just for good measure. The exact opposite of what a Tory government should be encouraging – competition, self reliance and more choice of healths (and education etc.) provision. Daft socialists baffoons everywhere.

    • Jerry
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      @LL; Ask almost anyone who actually uses the NHS, other than in an emergency, and most do not seem to believe the NHS is “so damn inefficient, incompetent and badly run” – only those who think they are3 more important that the person in front.

      • John Probert
        Posted May 6, 2017 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

        There will have to be a new model for the NHS and it will involve
        the private sector just like the rest of the world

        The current model is not sustainable

        • Jerry
          Posted May 7, 2017 at 9:12 am | Permalink

          @John Probert; What utter nonsense! The only people who prefer “private sector” involvement are those who see a money making opportunity in such a system, for example PFI, never mind care limiting insurance schemes, dumping them back onto the NHS or either with no care or having to fund their own medical bills from income/savings.

          • rose
            Posted May 7, 2017 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

            You cannot get round what John Probert points out: no-one else in the world has free at the point of use and no private involvement. It was a nice idea, and when it was first brought in, for a much smaller, less demanding population, and did only the basics – no hips or knees for example – it worked. People tended to die before they got the levels of cancer and alzheimers they do today.

            Its founder only intended it as a temporary measure, to bring the health of the poor up to the level of everyone else. He wouldn’t believe the expenditure today, and I don’t know what solution he would come up with for the problems of widespread old age or freedom of movement.

          • Jerry
            Posted May 9, 2017 at 8:01 am | Permalink

            rose; “You cannot get round what John Probert points out: no-one else in the world has free at the point of use and no private involvement.”

            True but they also have far more bloated back office health care system than the NHS has! Thus, even without a profit motive, costs are far higher, meaning that health insurance premiums compared to the UK and our direct funding model.

            “It was a nice idea, and when it was first brought in, for a much smaller, less demanding population, and did only the basics”

            Perhaps but then the NHS was having to care for the thousands who suffered health and life changing injuries during WW2 and WW1. The only real difference today is that some dislike paying for the NHS via their taxes.

      • alan jutson
        Posted May 6, 2017 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

        Jerry

        Have been unfortunate in the last 5 months to have had to use the NHS a number of times.

        Clinical treatment has been very good, administration has been appalling, and waiting time between appointments very, very frustrating.

        Follow up Physio also very good, but department very busy, so waiting between appointments again rather frustrating.

        Cannot help but think the staff and Hospital want to keep you out for as long as possible (delay of the inevitable unless it is an emergency)

        From my experience Clinical staff showed real care and concern, but the inefficient administration staff were causing real problems for the medical staff and patients.

      • libertarian
        Posted May 7, 2017 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

        Jerry

        “Ask almost anyone who actually uses the NHS, other than in an emergency, and most do not seem to believe the NHS is “so damn inefficient, incompetent and badly run”

        Really ? an organisation who has almost 25% of its budget £54 billion set aside for negligence payouts. Almost everyone that uses the NHS and especially the people that work in it know that it is inefficient and incompetently run.

        That is why no other country ever anywhere in the world has adopted the same model of health care and why there re 17 health care systems that are better than the NHS. Oh and by the way privatising it won’t make a blind bit of difference. It actually needs to be broken up

        • libertarian
          Posted May 7, 2017 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

          Oh and I forgot for a moment the trifling amount of £10 billion wasted on a failed and abandoned NHS IT system. I’d hate to know what Jerry thinks inefficient and incompetent management actually looks like

        • Jerry
          Posted May 7, 2017 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

          @libertarian; Nonsense. Do you have any idea what the litigation rate is in the USA for medical negligence?!

          Oh and when were doctors, nurses and other front-line staff for the failed NHS IT system, rather than inept government and IT specialists.

          • Edward2
            Posted May 8, 2017 at 3:44 pm | Permalink

            It’s always NHS v USA.
            Compare instead the NHS to the many superior systems in Europe and elsewhere.
            Let’s copy the best methods with an open mind and a determination to be the best again

          • Jerry
            Posted May 9, 2017 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

            @Edward2; Except that in this instants, with regards medical litigation and compensation, a comparison between the UK and USA is valid as our core legal systems are very similar – indeed one of the biggest problems now in the UK is that our legal system is getting far to much like the USA.

    • Richard1
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 8:42 am | Permalink

      Cut him a little slack. Failure to offer the required obeisances to the NHS during a general election would be like failing to sing the national anthem at the cenotaph on armistice day. But It is gradually dawning on increasing numbers of people that radical reform is required to the NHS, probably at least in part as more travel means people see how much better health services are elsewhere. But I fear it will have to get a lot worse before politicians will dare to make a real effort to make it better.

    • John S
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 10:41 am | Permalink

      Spot on. Well said.

    • bigneil
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 11:01 am | Permalink

      The NHS is there to treat us, AND whoever walks into this country. Nearly a million people a year walk in ( the only figures given now is how much is the increase in population NOT actual immigration). None of these people will have paid in a penny, and have no intention of doing so. They don’t care about the cost to us, they don’t care we also have to pay for translators, they don’t care that their vastly extended appointment times ( translation) comes out of OUR appointment times.

      How many people here would go to a restaurant where any foreigners bill is added onto ours? . . while they walk away after enjoying their free meal.

      • Anonymous
        Posted May 6, 2017 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

        Infuriatingly simple, Big Neil.

        They know.

        We don’t need government to run a system like this. In fact government is just an employment scheme for the middle class.

    • John Finn
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 11:39 am | Permalink

      On Question Time the other night someone asked a sensible question about why the NHS was so damn inefficient, incompetent and bady run.

      I’m not sure the NHS is “inefficient and badly run”. In fact, part of its problem might be that it’s too efficient e.g. the NHS doesn’t have spare hospital beds lying around empty for months at a time. UK Health spending represents a lower proportion of GDP than it does in most other major economies yet achieves comparable – if slightly below par – outcomes.

      In other healthcare systems doctors don’t worry about prescribing unnecessary medicines or referring patients for unnecessary procedures because insurance providers pick up the tab.

      The NHS has problems but they can’t simply be blamed on inefficiency – or lack of funding.

    • Posted May 6, 2017 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

      Could not agree more. NHS desperately needs reform. Look to Sweden and she has farmed out to competition most of the elective operations, minus the most complex.

  4. Mark B
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 6:53 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    There is a slow down occurring. It is imperceptible to those who do not possess a keen eye.

    The fact tbat supermarket giants are struggling against smaller low cost rivals is an indication that people are beginning to feel the pinch. Car sales are down and houses are not selling as fast as last year.

    Perhaps another reason the Government is holding an early GE is because it too sees a slow down in the economy.

    • DaveM
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 10:58 am | Permalink

      Mark,

      To give an alternative perspective regarding supermarkets:

      I personally am not feeling the pinch but prefer to use the cheaper supermarkets because why should I pay mega-rich corporations more for the same product? Back when I did struggle with money, I was unknowingly crying out for a Lidl or an Aldi so I could cut my food bill in half.

      Perhaps we should look at it the other way; people on low and middle incomes may now actually have more spare cash BECAUSE of the discount supermarkets and are shopping there by choice, not because they have to. Local shops also then profit by selling the additional items that you can’t get in the cheaper supermarkets, because folks can walk to them rather than having to drive to another supermarket. Analysts make much of so-called ‘brand loyalty’, but I very much doubt many people have any love for or loyalty to Tesco or Sainsburys. Although Asda make-your-own pizzas are worth a diversion

    • Beerings Inv Fund
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

      Mark B
      You may be right. About the slowness that is. It is a fast downturn, I feel. The reason the US car industry is in a pickle cannot be because steel, copper, aluminium, and oil prices are at a low, nor that the US worker “is increasingly better off” and “gains employment more easily”.
      Even investing in beer and lager production overall is not a good idea just now. When people in the world drink less beer, apart from the absolute tearful ltragedy of such human moral deterioration, it is clear sign things are not what they seem on the economic front.

    • Anonymous
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

      Must be Brexit.

      Call it off !!!!

  5. Peter Wood
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    Good Morning,

    Is it not painfully obvious to everyone by now, that talking to anyone in the EU bureaucracy is time wasted, and that the only person to talk to is the empress Mrs. Merkel?

    The EU’s only intent is to extort cash but the nations of Europe still want to trade. Lets not waste time on the former but concentrate on the nations of Europe.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 8:21 am | Permalink

      The interests of bureaucrats is always for more and more bureacracy, more & more red tape, more and more complexity, ever higher taxation or fines for non compliance and more and more interference in every singe aspect of people’s lifes or businesses. Only democratically elected politicians can protect us from this, but they never really do.

      Surely everyone realises this by now?

    • Emperor to Be
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

      Peter Wood
      ” Talking to anyone the EU is time wasted” Yes, including Merkel. Not politically possible but if I were Emperor without need of political parties I would not walk away from negotiations. I would not go there in the first place. I would neither suggest negotiations with the EU nor engage in them. Time is money. Expert negotioators can be better employed counting my money, treasure and jewels. You can’t trust the BoE to do it properly can you?

  6. Lifelogic
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    Still less what do May, Hammond and the bureaucrats know of the competitive challenges facing any specific or specialised industry. Businesses that they have never even visited? They cannot even organise efficient roads, defence procurement, education, the NHS, HMRC or even just basic rubbish collections – as we can all see nearly everyday.

    • Nig l
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 9:31 am | Permalink

      I don’t often agree with you, none the less this morning we read about the massive wasted costs of the smart meter roll out, diesel drivers to be penalised having followed government advice and in the last week another massive scandal in the NHS. Any one made to pay. You guessed it, the tax payer. Anyone on the supply side have to pay, of course not. Trillions wasted over the years. The Government of the day relies on a supine electorate enabling them to get away with it. We need more ‘poll tax’ anger.

      • Anonymous
        Posted May 6, 2017 at 11:23 pm | Permalink

        More to the point – petrol drivers not to be rewarded for ignoring advice that they knew was duff !

    • Jerry
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 11:16 am | Permalink

      @LL; The vast majority of the electorate appears to disagree with your Master Lifelogic, even more so since last Thursday…

  7. percy openshaw
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    I am glad to hear a note of cautious optimism in your latest post, Mr Redwood, but I must sound a note of disquiet. Whilst Mr Trump is busily reining in health spending, we hear from Mr Fraser Nelson that Mrs May plans £130 billion in tax rises and £175 billion of extra borrowing. As one who has consistently supported the Tory party for the sake of low taxes and a small state, I cannot describe the revulsion I would feel from a Tory administration which reneged on these principles – and although I cannot be certain of this, I think I speak for many. Democracy should not be about a choice between varieties of socialism; nor should the political triumph of Mrs Thatcher from beyond the grave – Brexit – be snarled up by the reactionary economics of Mr Heath in the form of Mrs May.

    • Anonymous
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

      I’d feel happier if such as Dr John Redwood were being moved to the front benches.

      As it is we have Amber Rudd and her concerns about freeing ‘slaves’ and issuing coffee shop visas.

      Otherwise I am sceptical about just how brexit Brexit is going to be.

  8. NHSGP
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    Really?

    I’ve been telling you that you are going to take an axe to the the state’s pensions because you have run up a 10 trillion pound pension debt.

    You have

    The prediction was that you would cut services to try and keep the ponzi going for longer.

    You have.

    The prediction was that you would also cut spending on services.

    You have.

  9. sm
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Regretfully I must disagree with your analysis – for one thing, printing yet more money to prop up the Euro and those countries who actually drowning in debt, together with idiotically low interest rates, is a recipe for disaster.

    Add this to the political situations in Turkey, Iran and the whole of the Middle East, civil wars and corruption in Africa, the malign shadow of Putin and the USA being run by an utter madman, and I think the new Conservative Government’s priority should be putting in place some very serious defence mechanisms.

  10. Iain Gill
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Yes but trump is reimporting jobs too. Unlike us who outsource all our polluting or dangerous work to others, decimate our information technology workforce by pushing the work offshore, and so on. There is more to trump than you imply.

  11. My Land
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    57,748 Scots in total, voted in the Local Elections in Scotland. ( May 4th 2017 ) Mrs Sturgeon and her SNP got 19,964 of them.

    But even if, even if, Mrs Sturgeon had got… every… single… vote, it would not equal the number of people living in the central area alone of my relatively small Yorkshire town.

    So why is “BBC Parliament” showing SNP Holy Rood debate after debate every time I switch on the TV? Why is Mrs Sturgeon and the SNP being interviewed by our media every blessed day?
    No-one from my town, nor the Greater MBC area of over 250,000 people including MPs and Councillors of any party whatsoever has appeared on TV recently.

    When is Holyrood going to be closed down and the threat by a small band of zealots attempting theft of an enormous tract of my Country eliminated?Devolution? Independence?Go tell it to the Marines!

  12. Nig l
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 9:00 am | Permalink

    We are seeing the BOE start to worry about high levels of personal debt, especially those with interest free cards and the Banks are responding by reining in credit, albeit slowly at present.

    HMG keeps crowing about our growth but then I seem to recall Gordon Brown doing the same.

    Is UK plc growth once again built on sand and what will happen when people reach their limits or rates go up?

    Lots of independent commentators are not as sanguine as you are.

    • Anonymous
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

      Growth is based on people preparing coffee for other people.

      We must issue visas to ensure that there are qualified people to pour hot water on coffee beans for other people.

      Heaven forfend people start doing this for themselves, and investing in sensible flasks to take to work .This will impact on GDP.

      Idiots queueing 10 deep to pay someone three quid to pour hot water on coffee beans for them.

      Must issue visas. Must issue visas. Economic growth growth growth. GDP GDP GDP !

      (Never mind non tax paying coffee shop chains demanding that we subsidised their workforces.)

      • Anonymous
        Posted May 6, 2017 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

        Mass immigration must continue to ensure we get coffee and curry.

        Open borders – visas visas visas…

        (Stealing Newmania’s semi literate prose.)

  13. Antisthenes
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Considering that we are not aware that we have found a way around the economic boom and bust cycles that is a brave reading of the world’s financial state. I would say that the world is in no less a precarious position as it is most of the time. Perhaps more so now than ever particularly as many of the checks and balances inherent in a free market capitalist system have been hijacked by the state and do not work in the least bit efficiently. Political and poorly understood and often inaccurate information dictate the decision making by government agencies and parliament as they attempt to control the direction of our economy.

    The market ensures that that which does not work is eliminated in favour of that which does. The state does not do that and wastes vast amounts of money doing the opposite creating asset bubbles, huge deficits and debt and an environment where crony capitalism can flourish. So stable economies we do not have. Even when they appear to be relatively healthy it does not take much of a nudge to topple them and the illusion of well being to be shattered again in another bust.

  14. acorn
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    Jean-Claude Juncker, the European Commission president, opted to deliver a speech in French on Friday morning because he said “English is losing importance” in Europe. (Politico.)

    IMO the exact opposite is the case. Have a look at this map of EU citizens that can converse in English. https://jakubmarian.com/map-of-the-percentage-of-people-speaking-english-in-the-eu-by-country/

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

      He was joking.

      But for the reason you suggest it is actually lucky for them that the Irish and Maltese will require English to be kept as one of the EU’s 24 official languages.

  15. More the merrier
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    My first economics teacher pretty early on told us that the reasons cities grew bigger was because there are great economies to be made with people concentrated in smaller and smaller spaces. He had never taught economics before. Had there been teachers numbering 10,000 in my small school instead of just a score or so, the chances are he would have taught economics far more prior to him teaching me. Though there is little evidence to substantiate the view that what he taught would have been any the smarter. The world needs more people and we should all try our best to make it happen for one another.

    • Anonymous
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

      Was that theory before or after the plague ?

  16. Jack
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    I certainly wouldn’t be so complacent. The UK economy is growing at an abysmally low rate of 2.1% per annum.

    China, on the other hand, has been growing around 15% per annum for the past two decades, and recently growing at a slow rate of 6.9% per annum. Here is how they did it: http://cdn.tradingeconomics.com/charts/china-loan-growth.png?s=chinaloagro&v=201704201725u&d1=19170101&d2=20171231&type=splinearea

    That said, a lot of China’s central bank and central government officials have been replaced by western-educated “monetarists” who don’t understand that the currency is a public monopoly, among other things. Although I’m unsure whether this relatively new group of officials actually causes a change of policy. If they do, then high growth China will be over, but it would still remain a very good historical example of how forcing banks to lend more, along with Keynesian fiscal stimulus, can grow an economy rapidly.

  17. Bert Young
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 10:14 am | Permalink

    We must not expect our economy – or others , to continue to preform in exactly the same sort of smoothly goes it way all of the time . The blips that happen are caused by many factors including the weather . That Supermarkets are waging war with each other is nothing more than gaining more market share and since they are all exposed to the same price variations , they do this at the expense of their profit margins .

    The $ dictates a lot of trade deals and our exchange rate with it reflects whether we win or lose . The Euro does not feature in the same way and is heavily influenced by outside support – particularly from the IMF ( also very heavily $ influenced ) . At the moment my wife complains of the shortage and increased price of Avocados and Mexico claims it is down to their bad weather . In a nutshell the world responds to the USA and China ; Europe’s presence on the scene is inconsequential .

  18. John S
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 10:43 am | Permalink

    Increasing government debt worries me.

  19. nigel seymour
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    British motorists on the continent face £640 speeding fines from today :
    Hundreds of thousands of British motorists will face fines for speeding in Europe under new rules coming in on Saturday.
    For the first time UK drivers who get caught by speed cameras going too fast on roads in countries including France, the Netherlands and Belgium will face fines of up to £640.
    However a quirk of the European law will crate a “one way” system in which Europeans caught speeding in the UK cannot be pursued by British police.
    EUROPEANS CANNOT BE PERSUED BY BRIT POLICE IN UK – sums it all up!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  20. Posted May 6, 2017 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    The Eurozone Quantitative Easing programme is the elephant in the European room.

    Mario Draghi is breaking the spirit and almost certainly the letter of EU law by buying up sovereign debt of individual EU member States which then becomes a liability for the whole of the EU. If this is not collectivising the debt by the back door, I don’t know what is. That was expressly ruled out in several European treaties.

    I have been wondering when the 27 will get round to telling us we must take on a share of this accumulated debt when we leave. Sooner or later there will be a very large default and German taxpayers will get a shock when they find out that has been done in their name.

    • sm
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

      I do sometimes wonder whether Mr Draghi is getting advice from Diane Abbott…..

  21. 3% to 4.5% in truth
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    The World’s NHS s could review their operations in regard to drug tablet usage. They order and reorder specific drugs and in the case of the UK, I’ve heard, perhaps wrongly, that the 5% allegedly out of date tablets at the bottom of the jars..are “thrown away” routinely or in one or two cases stolen by staff particularly the ones which are hallucinogenic.
    I can’t believe NHS staff would do this as they are all perfect as we know. Foreigners cannot do it any less often as to say they are less perfect than ourselves is a sin and possibly against the law as is their half inching tax-payer funded drugs.
    Perhaps the ONS, can come to an estimate of theft in the NHS. Supermarkets say between 2% and 5% of their goods are stolen by the public. Most companies make an assessment of the percentage of staff thefts though they do not usually send an email to staff about it and have it printed out in thousands as is usual in their profit making activities.

  22. Buried deep
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    So Trump visits Saudi Arabia “sometime” later this month and “before” the NATO meeting in Brussels on May 25-26.
    Well we will see what his visit does if anything for the oil price. I guess India and China still have their opt out in not complying with Iran oil import sanctions and I guess those sanctions are now lifted anyway because of Obama’s Foreign Secretary’s work ( he’s the one who fell off his bicycle whilst earnesly involved in geo-political war/peace talks affecting the whole planet ).
    So it is our economic fate depends on the script and ad hoc improvisation of these actors. I might invest my last few bob on a metal detector and go beachcombing. I might make a bomb, or find one. Mine…my luck!
    Now, if I were a Roman in 100AD Britain,where would I put my salary? There were no shops or overly priced women then. It’s marvellous how so many Roman salaries have been found buried close to disused American World War II airforce bases in Britain.

  23. Worzel Gummidge
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    “The world recovery will be fine”
    Diane Abacus would disagree.

  24. Jon p
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

    I believe the world economy is ok..and just ticking over.. but we should also be prepared for a downturn brought about by any number of things like war in the Far East, or a breakdown in relations between any of the major world powers or just if Trump trips up and causes some other disaster political or economic in north amrica or maybe even if the upcoming talks on brexit should go disasterously wrong- which i think they will.

    Here i am reminded from my history that the last time talks of such huge importance as brexit took place was about a hundred years ago ie. the talks leading up to the treaty of versailles following WW1. And we now know how these talks lead to eventual disasterous consequences for the whole world,.. So that is why i am not at all confident about how these brexit negotiations about to start are going to work out for us

    So scouts motto -better be prepared- then we won’t be completely thrown if and when it all goes wrong!

  25. John Claud Jumper
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    It was cunning of the Macron team to write all their emails in a foreign language unintelligible to most intelligent people in the free world.

  26. Denis Cooper
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    Off-topic, this is outrageous:

    https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2017-05-05/barnier-sets-stage-for-thorny-brexit-talks-on-citizens-rights

    “Some in the U.K. have tried to blame member states for the continued uncertainty that citizens have been confronted with for 10 months now,” according to an emailed transcript of Barnier’s remarks. “That is wrong. The only cause of uncertainty is Brexit,” the negotiator said, adding that “all the rest is political hot air.”

    Personally I don’t blame most of the member states, I blame the EU and just some of its member states, most especially Germany and to some extent France. It has been their callousness, not ours, which has prevented an early broad agreement.

    And thanks to the EU – the EU, not the UK – deciding that this matter will be covered by its principle that “nothing is agreed until everything is agreed” it will be another two years before these people will have any certainty about their future legal position.

    I’m inclined to go back to urging our government to act unilaterally, while making it clear that future negotiations will NOT be with the EU but with each of the EU member states separately with respect to its citizens in the UK and UK citizens in its territory.

  27. Denis Cooper
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

    Also off-topic, why we should not worry about continued uncontrollable and unlimited mass immigration if we ignore the “ultras” (those like JR) and instead take what seems to be the primrose path of least resistance and stay in the EEA after leaving the EU (if the other EEA members will allow us to do that):

    https://behindthepaywallblog.wordpress.com/2017/05/06/no-country-has-cracked-the-immigration-riddle/

    “No country has cracked the immigration riddle”

    It turns out that mass immigration is actually jolly good for the country, but in any case about half of the present mass immigration “is not covered by EU laws but by a thicket of other international rules, such as the UN Refugee Convention, our legacy obligations to citizens of the Commonwealth and, above all, the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), as interpreted by judges both in Strasbourg and Britain itself”, and so there’s no point in trying to control the half from the rest of the EU (or more exactly the EEA).

    Well, these advocates of continued EEA membership after we have left the EU have been gradually softening us for this argument for some time; really I’m only surprised that they haven’t gone the whole hog and said that they’ve changed their minds and can now see that overall it would be better if we stayed in the EU after all.

  28. fedupsoutherner
    Posted May 6, 2017 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

    I wish someone would tell people like my sister that the world economy is doing well. She works in a private care home for people with dementia. She works 4 nights a week doing 12 hour shifts. She has been punched, spat at, bitten and kicked. She has a really bad back at the moment and wonders how much longer she can carry on for. Minimum wage, widower at 54 and no sick pay. Things need to change for people like her. Anyone working in the public sector doesn’t know how well off they are with their sick pay and pensions.

    • libertarian
      Posted May 7, 2017 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

      fedupsoutherner

      Unless your sister is self employed then she absolutely does qualify for sick pay. Where I am in South England Dementia Care staff are paid a minimum of £10 per hour ( starting rate) and there are huge staff shortages and lots of jobs on offer

  29. Richard Butler
    Posted May 8, 2017 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    John, please, please read the book Futurebabble, a serious enquiry into why the big ticket predictions of Economists and social scientists have turned out wrong in c99% of cases.

    It really helps one understand how Project Fear became so potent in the mind of the pessimist

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, He graduated from Magdalen College Oxford, has a DPhil and is a fellow of All Souls College. A businessman by background, he has been a director of NM Rothschild merchant bank and chairman of a quoted industrial PLC.

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