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The take-up of tech – this is crucial for the recovery

August 10, 2020

This week Rory Sutherland, Vice Chairman of Ogilvy, in a column in the Spectator, points out that the take up of tech is much more limited by the demand side than the supply side, which is true. He then suggests that he is one of the very few people to observe this, a more dubious claim. Actually he is repeating one of the key points in my best selling (for…

Evening Standard – The City is dead, long live the City: the future of the Square Mile

August 8, 2020

The Centre for Economics and Business Research is one group that feels all of London will suffer if it loses the aura of being an exciting place to work.   Pablo Shah, a senior economist at the CEBR, said: “We had a management meeting in the office and were able to see what London looks like as the lockdown eases. To be frank, it looked like a ghost town. London last week…

City A.M. – Working from home costs London hospitality sector £2.3bn, economists say

August 3, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has caused £2.3bn of spending to be lost or displaced in shops, pubs and cafes near London employment hubs, according to new analysis by a think tank.   The Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) also estimated that the capital will lose out on roughly £178m a month of spending compared to pre-coronavirus trends as many people simply stop working in London’s business centres.   It…

London still looks like a ghost town – costing its hospitality sector £2.3 billion between March and June in foregone lunches and after-work drinks

August 3, 2020

Cebr opens its London offices for the first time since the lockdown started on Monday, 3 August. We plan to split the team into two groups, Blue and Green, and to take turns in working in the office so as to maintain social distancing. But many of our clients, particularly in finance and insurance, are not coming back to work until next year.   We had a management meeting in the…

Three good reasons for optimism – things could look so different a year from now, but getting there will be difficult….

July 27, 2020

William McChesney Martin served as Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank Board of Governors for an astonishing 20 years under five Presidents. But he is best known for saying that the role of the Fed was to take away the punchbowl just as the party got going. And historically economists and central bankers have been famed for their pessimism. But just as economists have a role in dampening excessive optimism,…

Daily Mail – One in three office workers want to continue working from home after coronavirus threat is over, survey reveals

July 20, 2020

The study showed a demand for more flexible working, up from a tenth in 2019 The survey found 32% of people expecting to at least partially work from home It comes as Boris Johnson on Friday urged Brits back to deserted High Streets   One in three office workers want to continue working from home after the coronavirus threat is over, a survey has revealed.   The study from the Centre for Economics…

Evening Standard – Saving Central London: One in four could work from home for good

July 20, 2020

View the full article here.   The number of London workers operating from home will double to 25 per cent over the next five years, with huge long-term implications for the capital’s economy, according to new analysis today.   It comes after the Standard yesterday revealed how the absence of commuters has already had a devastating impact on central London businesses during the lockdown. But today’s research from the Centre for Economics and Business Research…

The Loungewear Economy – lockdown experience to push 10.7 million Brits at least partly into the world of remote working – nearly a third of London workers likely to be working from home on any one day

July 20, 2020

Probably the most important change caused by the coronavirus pandemic for many households is the increase in working at home.   While the national lockdown compelled thousands of businesses to suspend their operations altogether – temporarily and in some unfortunate cases permanently – many more have adapted to the restrictions by expanding their remote working capabilities.   Ten years ago, this would not have been possible. But now, cutting edge…

As many as 70,000 e-scooter trips to work could be made in London each day. Could this be an ingredient in bringing dynamism back to the Central London economy?

July 13, 2020

Last week it became legal to use an e-scooter on UK public roads - provided it is rented from one of the Government-approved schemes that are to be trialled by local councils over the next 12 months. The announcement has been greeted with enthusiasm. The first UK scheme is expected to be up and running next week, in Middlesbrough, and 50 councils across the country have expressed an interest.  …

The Times – Hongkongers could offer £40bn boost to UK economy

July 6, 2020

View the full article here.   The high productivity of Hong Kong citizens and the tendency of migrants to work hard as they establish themselves would add to Britain’s wealth if the government’s special immigration pathway were used, the Centre for Economic and Business Research has said.   The consultancy estimated that mass migration of Hongkongers to the UK could boost the economy by £40 billion.   The foreign secretary has offered…