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Browse releases

September 20, 2023

The average earnings in the IT sector across the UK have increased at a greater rate than the wider economy despite a slowdown in hiring, indicating a continued struggle with skills shortages. This is according to the latest Robert Half Jobs Confidence Index (JCI), an economic confidence tracker produced in partnership with the Centre for

The recent rise in the oil price shows that central bankers cannot rely on endlessly falling energy prices to bring inflation back to target
September 18, 2023

Central bank policymakers are once again finding themselves in a balancing act as they head into the September round of rate setting meetings, hoping to bring inflation down to the 2% target while minimising damage to the economy. Rising oil prices mean that their job has got considerably more difficult. For most of the year,

Germany needs to rethink its growth model – also for the benefit of UK plc
September 11, 2023

Following the recent data revision by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the UK is estimated to have performed significantly stronger than initially thought in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic. The ONS now estimates that the UK economy in Q4 2021 was 0.6% larger than two years earlier before the start of the pandemic.

Britain likely to witness 7,000 business insolvencies per quarter in 2024, as high interest rates cause financial strain
September 4, 2023

There were over 6,700 business insolvencies in Britain in Q2 2023, more than double what was seen in a typical quarter during the pandemic, though during that period businesses were largely protected from insolvency through a range of measures. However, even compared with a more normal period these are up by 50% compared with the

The Chinese economy – we see growing pains but not a collapse
August 28, 2023

It’s interesting that no one official in China talks about when the Chinese economy will be bigger than that of the US. Their immediate objective is that China becomes a high income economy (defined by the World Bank’s metrics) by 2025. Having been remarkably successful at reducing (on their own figures they claim to have

Teens urged to claim Child Trust Fund proceeds: Typical account worth £2,100
August 24, 2023

New research has found as much as £1.7 billion lies unclaimed in the government-run savings accounts which were launched in 2005 and scrapped in 2011. Under the CTF scheme the government gave every child born between 2002 and 2011 a sum of money which was invested in a tax-free savings account. Parents, grandparents and others were then

The world inventory cycle could ease the pressure on the Bank of England
August 21, 2023

The inflation data from the UK over the past week has hinted that the Bank of England’s rate raising cycle may not yet be over. Wage inflation of 8% and core CPI inflation of 6.9% suggest that the target of 2% remains distant, despite falling producer prices. It is unlikely that the wage price cycle

Immigration is estimated to yield £3.3 billion annually for public finances as the UK sees near threefold increase in non-EU immigration since 2018
August 13, 2023

The latest immigration figures for 2022 showed another steep increase in the number of people coming to the UK. Based on the latest estimates, nearly 1.2 million people immigrated in 2022 while around 557,000 left the country, leading to a net migration figure of 606,000. This is up by 118,000 compared to 2021. Looking at the

Nearly 1 in 2 school leavers in England have reconsidered going to university, as cost of living soars
August 11, 2023

New survey from The Open University shows that 49% of 18–19-year-olds in England have reconsidered going to university in the last year, due to rising living costs 71% say they would consider distance learning if it meant saving money The Centre for Economic and Business Research (Cebr) estimates that studying with the OU could potentially

Removal of tax-free shopping costing £10.7bn in lost GDP and deterring two million tourists a year, report concludes
August 4, 2023

The analysis of VAT refund schemes for international visitors has become somewhat of a specialty at Cebr in recent years. With over a dozen reports across various jurisdictions, Cebr has been a leading voice in evaluating the costs and benefits associated with such schemes. Furthermore, we were asked to provide expert evidence in the court of

London Loves Business – Virgin Media O2 & Cebr data shows rural economy missing out on £65.1 billion boost
August 2, 2023

Improved rural connectivity could boost the UK economy by £65.1 billion, new economic modelling from the Cebr for Virgin Media O2 has found. The report, titled ‘The Great Rural Revival’, addresses four sectors central to the UK’s rural economy – tourism, agriculture, manufacturing, and small businesses – and finds connectivity improvements could boost rural employment

Global manufacturing sectors are in recession – expect this to worsen as the inventory cycle turns
July 31, 2023

We are expecting a major inventory cycle in worldwide manufacturing over the next two years, hitting already fragile manufacturing sectors in global economies. Even in normal times, the shape of the current economic cycle would lead to a knock-on inventory cycle, but high interest rates will amplify its shape in 2024 and 2025. This will

We forecast that China will be the world’s largest economy for only 21 years before the US overtakes again in 2057. And by 2081 India will have overtaken the US. How does this affect geopolitics?
July 24, 2023

Cebr’s last World Economic League Table (WELT) published in December 2022 suggested that China leapfrogging the US to become the world’s largest economy measured in dollar terms might be delayed to 2036 from the 2028 date previously forecast. The next version of WELT to be published this coming December will update this forecast but we

US inflation is falling back fast – will prices in the UK follow suit?
July 17, 2023

This week brought some welcome news from the US as inflation in the world’s largest economy slowed to 3% in June, down from 4% a month earlier. This is the lowest inflation reading since March 2021, and though the fall back is at least partly driven by base effects, it is hard not to see this

How a rapid post vaccine recovery, labour market tightness and shifting consumer behaviours created a perfect inflationary storm
July 7, 2023

On Wednesday, 5th July, I had the privilege of joining Professor Sir Charles Bean, (former Monetary Policy Committee and OBR Budget Responsibility Committee member), Stephen King (Senior Economic Adviser to HSBC) and Dr Sushil Wadhwani CBE (former MPC member) in giving evidence to the Treasury Select Committee. The session examined the Bank of England’s inflation

The US economy continues to confound expectations of a looming recession – so why are consumers so downbeat?
July 3, 2023

Over the past two years, the US has faced a series of challenges that have tested its resilience. Alongside the global battle against the pandemic, the nation has grappled with a surge in inflation, adding to its woes. The inflationary surge has prompted the US Federal Reserve (the Fed) to raise its base interest rates

City A.M. – Housing market a ‘ticking time bomb’ as prices slow amid mortgage mayhem
June 26, 2023

Cebr’s estimates for the costs to homeowners of renegotiating their mortgage is featured in the following City A.M. article. The housing market has slowed amid the mortgage crisis, with experts warning it is like a “ticking time bomb” before it crashes. This morning’s House Price Index from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show average UK

The Guardian – Warm weather pushes up retail sales in Great Britain as people turn to outdoor goods
June 26, 2023

Cebr’s comments on the impact of interest rate rises were featured in following Guardian article. Warmer weather and online bargains drove a surprise increase in retail sales in May after City forecasts predicted the cost of living crisis would persuade consumers to be more restrained. Retail sales in Great Britain rose 0.3% last month after

Bloomberg UK – BOE Must Not Enter Panic Mode on Inflation: Cebr CEO
June 26, 2023

Nina Skero, CEO at Centre for Economic and Business Research, doesn’t see “the need for this complete sense of panic” over the latest UK inflation data and explains why the Bank of England should not deliver a 50-basis point hike on Thursday. She speaks with Francine Lacqua on “Bloomberg Surveillance Early Edition.” Watch the interview

Reaction – Inflation: once the genie is out of the bottle, it’s really hard to stuff it back in.
June 26, 2023

The following article was written by Cebr’s Deputy Chairman, Douglas McWilliams. It all looked so easy. When Rishi Sunak pledged to halve inflation this year most commentators thought that this was already locked in. The base for comparison was inflated and many prices were near their cyclical peaks – indeed energy prices had already fallen sharply and this was

Bloomberg UK – Recruiter Warns Pay Grievances Could Drive UK Wage-Price Spiral
June 26, 2023

Cebr’s findings for Robert Half’s Jobs Confidence Index were quoted in the following Bloomberg UK article. A worrying combination of high job confidence and low satisfaction with pay is likely to keep driving tightness in the UK labor market and fueling pay growth, according to recruitment firm Robert Half.  Sixty-two percent of workers felt confident

The Telegraph – Why Britain’s mortgage crisis risks triggering the biggest house price crash on record
June 26, 2023

Featured in this article: comments from Cebr Director and Head of Forecasting and Thought Leadership Kay Neufeld. Nikki Kopelman and her husband James Bore bought their £420,000 home in 2019, securing a five-year fixed mortgage at a bargain rate of 2.5pc.  But the era of cheap money is now coming to a brutal end for Britain’s

An interest rate of 6% would mean nearly 10,000 extra home repossessions in the next three years
June 23, 2023

Please note: the figures in the report below were published before the Government announced additional measures to protected mortgage holders on 23 June. These measures will likely reduce the number of mortgage repossessions over the coming 12 months. UK mortgage holders just can’t catch a break at the moment. Gilt yields, which had been trending

The end of the free lunches…
June 19, 2023

I was recently asked to give a briefing on the UK property market for a range of foreign investors, mainly from South East Asia. This is an expanded version of some of my comments. Investing in the UK Since the Brexit vote many overseas investors have downgraded the UK. Simon French of Panmure Gordon estimates

City AM – London homeowners face ‘grim’ mortgage cost hike of £7,300 if Bank raises rates again
June 13, 2023

London homeowners looking to renegotiate their mortgage this year face a whopping £7,300 rise in annual costs as experts warn of the “grim reality” of rising interest rates.  The Bank of England is predicted to hike interest rates for the 13th consecutive time this year to 5.5 per cent in efforts to cool soaring inflation, with the decision set

Bloomberg – UK Loses Nearly Four Million Days to Worst Strikes Since 1990
June 13, 2023

Britain’s economy has lost nearly 4 million working days to strikes since the start of last year, with little end in sight to the worst industrial unrest in decades. Another 257,000 days were lost in April, the Office for National Statistics said Tuesday, a month in which junior doctors, nurses and some civil servants protested against below-inflation

Daily Express – UK homeowners face £9billion mortgage rate shock with one area hit hardest this year
June 13, 2023

Homeowners will have to spend an extra £9billion in interest payments over 2023-24 as they re-finance, with rates doubling, research by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) shows. Two and a half million homeowners will come to the end of fixed rate deals across 2023 and 2024 with another one million on variable rate deals.

The Telegraph – London homeowners face £7,300 mortgage rate shock
June 13, 2023

London homeowners will see their annual bill jump by up to £7,300 when they remortgage this year as 3.5 million borrowers face a rate shock. Nationally, homeowners will have to spend nearly an extra £9bn in interest over 2023 and 2024 as they are forced to refinance at rates that are double what they are used

Daily Mail – Unions line up another year of strike mayhem
June 13, 2023

Sports fans face rail chaos today – with another year of strikes in prospect. Train drivers represented by Aslef will bring network services to a standstill for the second time this week in a bitter dispute over pay. The union’s 11th walkout since last June will hit fans trying to make it to the Epsom

Scottish Daily Express – Minimum pricing has had no impact on Scotland’s worst problem drinkers
June 12, 2023

A new study has revealed the SNP’s flagship minimum alcohol pricing policy has done little to curb harm to Scotland’s most hardened drinkers. The controversial move saw cheap alcohol effectively banned in Scotland when it was finally introduced five years ago following a long legal battle. Ministers promised it would reduce deaths, hospital admissions and jobless rates

City AM – Our digital economy won’t pay off unless everyone in the UK can benefit from it
June 12, 2023

The UK’s economic future is intrinsically linked to the continued and growing success of technology. It is the primary driver of progress across our cities and regions, shaping the way we produce, connect and innovate, giving everyone access to more and better goods and services, upon which our economy fundamentally depends. The world is experiencing

Increase in mortgage rates expected to cost UK households £9 billion over 2023 and 2024, with London and the South East experiencing the sharpest rises
June 12, 2023

The volatility in the UK mortgage market has yet again intensified as major banks swiftly withdraw their mortgage offerings, creating more uncertainty for potential homebuyers and homeowners alike. April’s higher-than-expected inflation reading has unsettled the recent steady falls in fixed mortgage rates, highlighting affordability as the primary concern for the housing market. With the Bank

Daily Express – Side hustles can boost income ‘by £10,000 a year’
June 9, 2023

Side hustlers in the UK are earning almost £10,000 a year through their additional ventures, a new report unveiled today. The new figures, that form part of a report from Utility Warehouse (UW) and Cebr, show there are over 20 million multi-income individuals (‘Miis’) in the UK representing more than one in three of the adult population.

The Telegraph – Mortgage approvals to slump to lowest level since financial crisis
June 5, 2023

Mortgage approvals are on track to slump to their lowest level since the financial crisis as high interest rates continue to hammer borrowers, figures show. Based on the current trajectory, the number of home loans agreed will fall this year to the lowest level recorded since 2008, according to Capital Economics. It comes as Bank

Greedflation will soon be a thing of the past as consumers’ patience wears thin
June 5, 2023

Inflation now seems firmly on the retreat across most developed economies. While concerns remain regarding the speed with which inflation is expected to fall back to target and the UK in particular seems to grapple with stubbornly high core inflation, the trend is encouraging. Still, if you were to ask two economists for the reasons

The Telegraph – Borrowing costs surge back to Truss-era highs after inflation shock
May 30, 2023

UK borrowing costs surged to levels last reached under Liz Truss’s ill-fated premiership after traders were spooked by unexpectedly strong inflation. The consumer prices index (CPI) dropped to 8.7pc last month from 10.1pc in March, but the Bank of England had expected a bigger fall to 8.4pc. Meanwhile, core inflation increased to 6.8pc in April, its

With global manufacturing in crisis, economies are dangerously reliant on consumer spending to avoid a recession in 2023
May 29, 2023

Compared to the gloomy forecasts at the nadir of the energy crisis last winter, recent months have seen widespread upward revisions to growth forecasts, particularly for the UK, which now looks set to avoid recession in the first half of 2023. The Eurozone, too, has fared less badly than predicted albeit growth remains anaemic and

Reaction – UK inflation falls below 10% for first time since last August
May 25, 2023

UK inflation on the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) measure slowed to 8.7% in April, according to data released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) this morning in line with Cebr’s forecast for the month. The rate of price growth on the CPI measure has now fallen below 10% for the first time since August 2022. Core inflation,

Understanding the UK productivity collapse – the bulk of the shortfall comes from online shopping and the government sector
May 22, 2023

New government data released in the past week has shown that the UK’s productivity has fallen over the last year. Output per person hour in Q1 2023 was down 0.6% on the same quarter a year ago and output per worker was down 0.9%.[1] Without productivity growth, the economy cannot prosper – a continuation of

Forbes Advisor – Household Finances: Soaring Living Costs See Millions Struggling With Bills
May 18, 2023

As the cost of living crisis drags on, almost a third of UK adults have dipped into their savings to make ends meet, collectively withdrawing more than £53 billion, writes Bethany Garner. In the 12 months to April 2023, 29% of UK adults say they used savings to keep up with living costs, according to a study commissioned

Reaction – US inflation eases as Fed signals end to monetary tightening cycle
May 18, 2023

The annual rate of inflation in the US, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), stood at 4.9% in April. This is according to data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Wednesday. Inflation on the CPI-U measure has now slowed for ten consecutive months since last June’s peak of 9.1%, with

Financial Times – MyBnk calls for 30 hours a year of financial education in UK schools
May 18, 2023

Young people require a working week of tuition each year to be financially literate by the time they leave school, according to a new report. MyBnk, the education charity which led the Money & Pensions Service’s financial workshops for 16 and 17-year-olds, said that 30 hours of financial education each year for 11 to 18-year-olds

Bloomberg – UK Loses Another Half a Million Days to Strikes in One Month
May 18, 2023

Britain’s economy lost another half a million working days to strikes in March amid the most severe round of industrial action in nearly four decades. The UK has now lost more than 3.5 million days to walkouts since the Office for National Statistics began collecting the data last June following a pause during the Covid

The Independent – Financially desperate Britons turning to gambling as a ‘quick fix’ amid historic wealth lows
May 18, 2023

Financially desperate Britons are increasingly turning to gambling as a “quick fix” as wealth levels fall to historic lows, a study suggests. The annual LifeSearch Health, Wealth and Happiness Index compiled by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) fell 11 per cent over the last year to lows not seen since the height of the pandemic. The wealth index

Industrial action cost the UK economy £243m in Q1 due to lost working days, but indirect costs will drive bigger overall impacts
May 12, 2023

The ongoing wave of industrial action that has been sweeping the UK has eased since the end of last year, but with little progress being made in negotiations between unions and government it looks set to drag on. In the nine months to February, more than 3 million working days were lost to strikes, and

The Conversation – Does British tourism really need the royal family?
May 10, 2023

Love them or loathe them, the royal family are up there with red telephone boxes and scones when it comes to images of Britishness. Souvenir shops are full of their faces, newspapers across the world discuss them, and television dramas based on their lives have never been more popular. Whenever people are critical of the royal family,

The Telegraph – Renters offered deposit-free mortgages, if they’re quick
May 10, 2023

Deposit-free mortgages have returned for the first time since the financial crisis, as lenders help renters onto the property ladder. Skipton Building Society has launched a 100pc mortgage exclusively for renters aged over 21, who will not need a cash deposit to buy their first home. Instead, potential buyers must pass a credit and affordability check, as

BBC – Bunting, biscuits, beer – Brits spend on Coronation
May 9, 2023

The British public is refusing to let typical bank holiday weather spoil its Coronation plans and is gearing up for street parties and family celebrations. Around £200m will be spent on food and drink this weekend, according to the Centre for Retail Research (CRR). Supermarket chain Lidl said it had sold enough bunting to line

A credit crunch is squeezing the global economy
May 8, 2023

Recent economic data have painted a more positive picture of business activity for most developed economies. For example, service sector PMI data for April point towards expansion at the fastest rate in a year raising hopes that a more protracted economic slowdown can be avoided. Odds of a recession or even a single quarter of

Daily Express – New reports reveal how Sadiq Khan’s ULEZ scheme will ‘clobber’ London and south’s economy
May 3, 2023

Two devastating reports have revealed that Sadiq Khan’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) expansion, taxing thousands of drivers each day, will cost London hundreds of million of pounds a year and hit 1.2 million cars in the commuter belt. The London Mayor had planned for the rollout to take place this Autumn but they are subject to

The Times – Ditch ‘unrealistic’ pledge to ban petrol cars by 2030, ministers told
May 3, 2023

Ministers have been urged by MPs, economists and motoring groups to rethink plans to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030. Criticism is growing over the most significant government intervention in the car market to date, amid claims that regulation is not needed to promote electric vehicles (EVs). The sale of

CNN – Why everyone in business loves India right now
May 3, 2023

When Tim Cook arrived in India earlier this month to open Apple’s first physical store in the country, he was welcomed like a hero. The CEO was greeted with cheers and applause, presented with a vintage Macintosh and held court with the country’s officials, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Cook’s visit, the latest by a top global executive, exemplifies the

UK economy raises a glass to £337 million Coronation boost from tourism and pub activity
May 1, 2023

As May approaches, the UK eagerly anticipates not only three bank holidays but also the once-in-a-lifetime Coronation ceremony for King Charles III. With an extended weekend and pubs allowed to stay open for longer, it should be a joyous occasion. How will these celebrations affect the UK economy? The Coronation weekend promises to bring a

The Telegraph – Teachers’ strikes force parents to plan for six-day weekend
April 28, 2023

Parents forced to take time off work for childcare during teachers’ strikes are planning for a possible six-day weekend. The majority of state schools in England were closed to some or all pupils on Thursday and are expected to close for further strikes after the Bank Holiday on Tuesday, forcing tens of thousands of parents to take time off

The Times – ‘Slash taxes or tourists will shun the hotspots’
April 28, 2023

The chancellor is facing renewed pressure from the retail industry to reintroduce tax-free shopping for tourists. The scheme allowed visitors from non-EU countries to recover the VAT on purchases bought within the trip but was withdrawn by the Treasury on December 31, 2020, during the pandemic. Last autumn, when Jeremy Hunt said he would keep

Daily Mail – Britain is missing out on millions from international visitors due to tourist tax, new figures reveal
April 28, 2023

Figures today lay bare how British stores are missing out on millions of pounds from international visitors after the removal of tax-free shopping for overseas tourists. As the campaign to scrap the hated tourist tax widens, data shows how holidaymakers are spending far more on the Continent than Britain. European shops have enjoyed their best month for

Reaction – Call for an inquiry into Tourist Tax Fiasco
April 28, 2023

The VAT Retail Export Scheme was withdrawn after December 2020 despite protests from retailers and from Global Blue, the company that specialises in obtaining VAT rebates for tourists. Post Brexit the government would eventually have had to extend the scheme to tourists from the EU as well as from outside the area. Paradoxically, because of the Northern Ireland Protocol,

The Telegraph – Europe ‘eats Britain’s lunch’ as tourist tax raid costs UK £3bn
April 26, 2023

The UK will miss out on more than £3bn of tourist spending this year as “Europe eats Britain’s lunch” after a tax raid on travellers by Rishi Sunak, new data suggests. Figures show that spending by visitors from the US and Gulf states has surged in France and Italy while barely reaching pre-pandemic levels in the UK after the

YouGov – Consumer confidence falls for the first time in 2023
April 26, 2023

After months of steady improvement, consumer confidence fell from 100.4 to 99.4 (-1) in March 2023, according to the latest analysis from YouGov and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr).   YouGov collects consumer confidence data every day, conducting over 6,000 interviews a month. Respondents answer questions about household finances, property prices, job security,

Investors’ Chronicle – How the King’s coronation will affect the economy
April 26, 2023

They say that Romans celebrated 135 feast days a year, and that a mediaeval peasant worked for only half the year. Thanks to the coronation, the UK will enjoy nine bank holidays this year, instead of our usual eight – still miserly by modern European standards (see chart).  In economic terms, bank holidays are a double-edged

The Telegraph – China’s miraculous growth machine is juddering to a halt
April 24, 2023

By the middle of 2022, China’s top leadership had stopped mentioning their target for GDP growth. It was already clear that they’d fall short of the 5.5 per cent figure set at the beginning of that year, with the Politburo instead saying that they strove for “the best possible results”. In the end, a series of fierce

The costs of Net Zero may not be net zero
April 24, 2023

The UK government’s rush to act on Net Zero is resulting in a failure to recognise that there are more (and less) efficient methods to decarbonise the economy. This is leading to some policies which are, at best, excessively costly, and at worst, both costly and environmentally ineffective. As an economic thought leader, Cebr has

The Epoch Times – Fuel Campaigner and Lobbyist Says Ban on Petrol and Diesel Cars ‘Doesn’t Make Sense’
April 20, 2023

A lobbyist and campaigner for motorists claimed the ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars in the UK in 2030 will cost five times more than any environmental benefits. Howard Cox, CEO of FairFuelUK, said: “There will be about £75 billion worth of benefits in environmental jobs and all those sorts of things,

The Times – Effects of strikes on UK economy less damaging than feared
April 19, 2023

The hit to the economy from strikes is lower than originally feared, experts have said. The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) said that the impact of industrial action on GDP between June last year and the end of April is estimated to be £1.4 billion, or £127 million per month. The forecaster had

Research Live – Consumer confidence down in March
April 19, 2023

UK – Consumer confidence fell in March, with the most serious declines seen in short-term job security and business activity, according to research by YouGov and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr). The research registered a one-point drop in consumer confidence from 100.4 to 99.4, the first decline seen in YouGov and the

The Times – Can Rishi Sunak give the economy wings ahead of an election?
April 19, 2023

Pounding around his first London Marathon last October, Jeremy Hunt spotted a placard thanking participants for “showing the government how to run things”. Given that he was then merely a backbench MP, the twice-failed Tory leadership contender saw the funny side. When he tackles the race again next weekend, it will be rather different. The

With discretionary incomes falling, why do we see the savings rate increasing?
April 17, 2023

With inflation still near record-highs and real wages falling, it would be easy to see how UK consumers are drawing down their savings to pay for their bills. Cebr previously reported on the forced savings accumulated during the pandemic[1] and it would seem sensible for the savings rate to fall precipitously now that many households

The Telegraph – The return of 100pc mortgages could spell disasters for the housing market
April 13, 2023

Deposit-free mortgages are about to return to the housing market – but experts have warned they pose a risk of negative equity and threaten to destabilise the banking system. Skipton Building Society plans to launch a new loan that would allow borrowers to bypass standard deposit requirements by using their rental payment history. Borrowers typically

Mirror – Warnings over vaping amid Government plan to wean a million smokers off tobacco
April 13, 2023

Watermelon bubble gum, blueberry sour raspberry, gummy bear, ginger cola… no, not some of the sugary treats on the shelves of your childhood sweet shop, but just a few of the flavours of electronic-cigarette liquids being bought across the country every single day. Vaping, which is the inhaling of a vapour created by an e-cigarette,

Reaction – Energy prices drive US inflation downwards, but core price growth remains stubborn
April 13, 2023

The annual rate of inflation in the US, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), stood at 5.0% in March. This is according to data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics this afternoon. Inflation on the CPI-U measure has now slowed for nine consecutive months since June’s peak of 9.1%. March’s month-on-month slowdown

Sustaining the economic miracle: South Korea to break global top ten by 2026
April 10, 2023

Korea’s growth miracle: 1953 – present In the aftermath of the Korean War, South Korea was one of the poorest economies on the planet. The war caused mass casualties and displacement of people, while also devastating the country’s infrastructure. In 1953, South Korea’s GDP per capita was lower than those of Somalia and Haiti, which

More than £200 billion has been written off the value of the UK’s commercial real estate in the past nine months. How does this affect an already struggling economy?
April 3, 2023

The UK’s non-residential building stock (excluding land value) was worth £899 billion at the end of 2020, according to Office for National Statistics (ONS) Blue Book [1] data. Then, by mid-2022 the value of these buildings had probably risen to around £1 trillion. But since then, the market has collapsed and Schroders Research [2] estimates the value

The Guardian – Rising bills and tax hikes to make UK families hundreds of pounds worse off
March 31, 2023

A wave of rising bills and tax hikes coming into effect in April will leave a family on a £50,000 annual income almost £700 a year worse off, according to a study of the damaging effects of the cost of living crisis. Unions have warned that an increase in the minimum wage will not be

YouGov – Consumer confidence rises as nearly every measure sees improvement
March 29, 2023

Good times, for a change? Well, we might not go that far. But consumer confidence increased from 98.3 to 100.4 (+2.1) in February 2023, according to the latest analysis from YouGov and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr), amid positive movement across almost every measure.   It paints a radically different picture from February

The Independent – Work-related stress and burnout costing UK economy £28bn per year, research shows
March 29, 2023

People taking sick days because of work-related stress or burnout is costing the UK economy £28bn a year, according to new research which highlights the financial toll of poor mental wellbeing. More people said they were struggling in the UK than in any other nation, the survey of 30,000 adults across 16 European, Asian and American countries by insurer Axa

The Telegraph – 55,000 working parents to be stuck in Hunt’s childcare tax trap
March 27, 2023

Fiscal drag will pull 55,000 working parents into Jeremy Hunt’s childcare tax trap over the next five years, analysis by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) shows. The number of parents who will find it harder to go back to work or will be incentivised to keep their salaries low will swell by

The Scotsman – Openreach hails ‘significant milestone’ with ten million full-fibre connections
March 27, 2023

The BT-owned business said the roll-out of full fibre broadband across the country was part of an ambitious £15 billion infrastructure project. Since the pandemic, the UK’s internet usage has soared, doubling in 2020 and increasing year on year with more data downloaded last year than ever before. As well as improving the broadband that

Reaction – Surprise inflation rise in February is a headache for the Bank of England
March 27, 2023

UK inflation on the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) measure stood at 10.4% in February 2023, according to data released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) this morning. Inflation therefore increased from 10.1% in January, marking a divergence in the recent trend of deceleration seen in the prior  three months. Consequently, February’s headline reading for annual inflation was higher than both

The Institute of Export and International Trade – Anglesey Freeport could have key role in restoring ‘GB landbridge’, says trade experts
March 27, 2023

The announcement of two new freeports in Wales is good news for businesses moving goods over the Irish Sea, trade and customs experts have said. The two freeports, one in Anglesey and one in Port Talbot and Milford Haven, are the first to be confirmed in Wales and the 11th and 12th in the UK

Reaction – The UK’s growth stagnation
March 27, 2023

When the Chancellor stood up to deliver his budget last week, the latest quarterly GDP data showed UK GDP 0.8% lower than pre pandemic three years earlier while we remain pretty well at full employment.  The problem of dealing with stagnation existed even before the banking crisis became apparent. Since then, with liquidity now in short supply, the issue is even more

The Flat White Economy is about to go flat – the UK’s tech economy powered through the pandemic but looks likely to fall back relative to that in other countries in the coming years
March 27, 2023

The collapse of Silicon Valley Bank draws attention to the continuing problems of the tech sector both in the US and here in the UK. While the Bank of England claims that there are no systemic issues in the UK resulting from the collapse it appears that many UK tech companies, perhaps a third, had relationships

International Business Times – Job seeker confidence ‘higher than during the Financial Crash’, new research shows
March 22, 2023

Jobseekers remain optimistic about their job security and career progression prospects, according to the Robert Half Jobs Confidence Index (JCI) released on Monday. Created in association with the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr), the Index reports on socio-economic factors influencing confidence in the UK labour market. The research revealed that while the JCI

Bloomberg – India to Splurge $12 Billion on Airports as Travel Rebounds
March 22, 2023

India will spend about 980 billion rupees ($12 billion) over the next two years on airports, with airline orders for hundreds of new planes to meet resurgent travel demand putting pressure on existing infrastructure.  The world’s fastest-growing aviation market aims to boost the number of airports to 220 by 2025 from the current 148, for which private builders will

The Telegraph – How Swiss banking went from a Rolls-Royce to a toxic mess
March 20, 2023

Swiss banking was long regarded as the Rolls Royce of finance – a byword for discretion, exceptional service and above all, safety.  But as Credit Suisse teeters on the brink, that reputation is so tarnished as to appear irrecoverable. Instead, years of dysfunction and mistakes mean parts of the industry are becoming regarded as the

LBC – Commentary: Check the fine print and Hunt’s Budget ‘looks a bit less impressive’
March 17, 2023

The Chancellor’s budget was well delivered and obtained a rousing reception (from his own side) in the House of Commons. We’ve now had a chance to read the supporting documents and it looks a bit less impressive. What appeared to be quite an expensive and carefully worked out programme to bring people back into the

The Hindu – Most Indian businesses to increase travel budget in 2023: AmEx-Cebr study
March 17, 2023

With business travel across domestic and international markets showing a rebound post-pandemic, some 77% of Indian businesses expect to increase their travel budget in 2023 compared with 2022, a survey commissioned by American Express India with the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) said on Thursday. Manish Kapoor, VP and Head, Global Commercial Services (GCS),

Evening Standard – Consumer sentiment positive for first time since mini-Budget, YouGov/Cebr survey finds
March 17, 2023

Consumer confidence in February was positive for the first time since September 2022’s disastrous mini-Budget, according to a monthly survey by YouGov for the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr). The YouGov/Cebr Consumer Confidence Index was 100.4 in February, with a score above 100 indicating positive sentiment. The  index had plunged by 4.2 points in September – the month of the mini-Budget –

While the Budget was distracting UK economists, a banking crisis was the real news…
March 17, 2023

The markets may have been unimpressed by yesterday’s Budget. But we will never know. The fall in both the equity and bond markets on Wednesday was all about the emerging banking crisis as the share price of Credit Suisse collapsed, not the Budget. While British economists were distracted by the Budget, one of the world’s

Reuters – UK consumer mood improved in February
March 16, 2023

British consumers grew more confident in February, adding to signs of an improving economy, but households are still worried about the squeeze on their living standards, a survey published on Wednesday found. A YouGov and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) survey showed consumer confidence rose 2.1 points last month, increasing from 98.3

How to manage an economy that’s run out of growth …
March 15, 2023

Today’s Budget is the first against a background where economic growth in the UK has virtually ground to a halt. Official estimates of GDP for the end of last year (Q4) is estimated to have been 0.8% lower than in Q4 2019 pre pandemic and yet the labour market remains tight with unemployment stubbornly below 4%.

Reaction – Real pay growth witnesses worst performance since 2009
March 15, 2023

The UK unemployment rate stood at 3.7% in the three months to January, according to figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) this morning. This was unchanged on the previous three-month period, ending in October. Indeed, the unemployment rate has remained constant for each of the last four readings. This measure is currently down

The Scotsman – Firms set for major connectivity boost as Openreach ups rollout of ultrafast full fibre across Scotland
March 15, 2023

The connectivity specialist, which says it builds and maintains the UK’s largest broadband network, is expanding its hi-tech offering that is up to ten times faster than the average home broadband connection in urban areas like Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Stirling and Glasgow and rural parts of regions including Fife, East Lothian, Highland, Aberdeenshire and Dumfries and Galloway during 2023. It adds

International Business Times – The number of women in the financial markets grows every year despite stereotypes
March 14, 2023

As early as 1870, Victoria Woodhull became the first female stockbroker and Muriel Siebert also referred to as the “first woman of finance”, was the first woman to join the 1,365 male members of the stock exchange on 28 December 1967. She owned a seat on the New York Stock Exchange and was the first

The Telegraph – Rishi Sunak’s stealth tax raid will cost workers £78bn by 2028.
March 13, 2023

The deep freeze on tax thresholds will cost taxpayers billions of pounds more than initially expected, new analysis has revealed, because of the impact of soaring inflation.  The Prime Minister’s decision not to increase income tax bands with inflation will cost taxpayers an estimated £78n in extra tax between 2022 and 2028. The analysis, which

Reaction – UK economy’s January rebound is good news for the Budget
March 13, 2023

The UK economy grew by 0.3% month-on-month in January, according to data published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) this morning. This followed December’s 0.5% contraction, meaning that overall, the economy flatlined in the three months to January. While it is encouraging to see a return to growth for the UK economy, we believe that a recession in

Is there really £60 billion to pay for goodies in the Spring Statement on 15 March?
March 13, 2023

Cebr has consistently pointed out that the fiscal outlook is nowhere near as bleak as official forecasts had indicated and data has emerged supporting our view, especially the borrowing data for January. In the past week, other organisations have joined the debate. The venerable National Institute for Economic and Social Research is alleged to have

The Scotsman – Over 65s are suffering with record energy prices due to their energy inefficient homes
March 10, 2023

A report has found 62 per cent of over 65s – as many as 7.75m – live in inefficient properties (EPC ‘D’ or below), compared to 48 per cent of under 30s. The energy inefficiency of their homes is leading over 65s to pay £611 more per year on average for their energy bills compared

Financial News – Closing gender pay gap could unlock £147bn from women in finance
March 8, 2023

Women working in financial services could unlock up to £147bn of value for the UK economy by 2035 if wages increase and the gender pay gap shrinks, according to a report by the London Stock Exchange. Analysis from the Centre for Economics and Business Research on behalf of the UK exchange found the contribution from

Raconteur – Why employees’ personal finances are now a business risk
March 6, 2023

The link between employees’ financial wellbeing and the overall health of a business may not seem obvious. But how staff feel about money – and the state of their finances – is potentially an important (if overlooked) aspect of business resilience. A workforce that is comfortable with personal finances can arguably increase a company’s productivity

The Telegraph – Beijing in crisis as China faces a child-free future
March 6, 2023

Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz declared almost a decade ago that 2014 “was the last year in which the United States could claim to be the world’s largest economic power.” It was, he claimed, the start of the “Chinese century”. He was wrong: the US remains the world’s largest economy. Yet experts keep predicting that

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