It is five years since the introduction of quantitative easing (QE) in Britain. This chronology is from my latest Fund Strategy cover story. QE was first implemented in Britain five years ago. However, there were precedents in other countries. The Bank of Japan implemented a form of QE from 2001 to 2006. In November 2008 the Federal [...]
This is the main text for my Fund Strategy cover story on five years of extraordinary monetary policy in Britain. I will post the accompanying boxes over the next couple of days. It is easy to forget how much Britain’s financial architecture has changed in just five years. Back in early 2009 the term quantitative [...]
Adair Turner is probably the closest the British establishment has to a go-to guy on finance and much else besides. During his long career he has provided both intellectual and practical leadership on some of the thorniest problems Britain faces. His CV is remarkable. After many years at McKinsey, one of the world’s top management [...]
This column first appeared in the March edition of Fund Strategy. The accompanying graph is available to see here. This column may be a little more personal for readers than normal. It concerns the likely trajectory of wages in the near future. In particular whether there are any signs of an upward trend after the [...]
All the talk about how the Bank of England should best pursue forward guidance has missed the bigger picture. The ever-greater powers assumed by the Bank in recent years represent an abnegation of democracy. This trend is objectionable in principle and damaging in practice. The rot had already started to become apparent back in 1997 [...]
Episode three of the Benefits Street documentary was relatively dull. To the extent there was a theme it was the relationship between parents and young children. Unfortunately the topic was not properly developed. The programme touched on state intervention in family life including a visit by a health visitor and by someone from Sure Start [...]
Given the furore about Benefits Street, Channel 4’s fly-on-the-wall TV documentary series, it was interesting to hear the statistics on benefits cited in the BBC Radio 4’s latest More Or Less programme. Evidently the widely reported claim that 90% of those living on Birmingham’s James Turner Street, as featured in the documentary, are on benefits [...]
Having finally watched the first episode of Benefits Street it was striking that, contrary to the impression given in many commentaries, the welfare state was not to the fore. It would be more accurate to say social exclusion, or what is sometimes called the underclass, was the focus of the controversial TV programme. The fly-on-the [...]
Boris Johnson, the mayor of London, has unwittingly endorsed my characterisation of him as a new egalitarian in yesterday’s spiked piece. An article in today’s Guardian quotes him as saying “there is too much inequality” and “my speech was actually a warning against letting inequality go unchecked”.
This article first appeared in this week’s Fund Strategy magazine. Even by the standards of a world of confused debates the discussion of energy is spectacularly muddled. While politicians and campaigners bluster about greedy energy companies the central issue, how to bolster supply, receives little attention. Politicians of all stripes are guilty of posturing on [...]
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