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04

Dec

Memories of the Major administration: what growth looks like and why it is not enough

What does a period of sustained economic growth look like? Twenty years ago, the UK was in the early stages of a recovery that went on to become the best eight years for the UK…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Economic Policy

28

Nov

Autumn Statement: is the government really in control?

George Osborne will certainly find next week’s Autumn Statement an easier ride than in 2011 or 2012. In the past two years, the opposition charge that his austerity had caused…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Economic Policy

13

Nov

Is Ofwat taking a tougher approach?

Thames Water’s request for a £29 increase in household bills to cover costs not included in the last price review has been rejected by the industry regulator Ofwat. The…

  • Author: Adam Tinson
  • Category: Services

13

Sep

Lehman, five years on

Five years ago on Sunday, the American investment bank, Lehman Brothers, was declared bankrupt. Here we take a quick look at some of the economic and social changes since 2008,…

  • Author: Tom MacInnes
  • Category: Economic Policy

14

Aug

If the public pays for the super sewer it should own it too

Thames Water’s proposal to levy a £30 surcharge on its 14 million customers to help pay for the super sewer is an opportunity that no populist politician worth their salt would…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Services

17

Apr

Unemployment up, inactivity down

The big headline from the most recent labour market statistics was a rise in unemployment. At the same time, though, levels of inactivity have fallen to their lowest since the…

  • Author: Tom MacInnes
  • Category: Work and Pay

09

Apr

The lessons of 'Black April'

Over the last week, the NPI blog has been examining the merits of this April’s package of benefit reforms without relying on the fact that their adverse impacts are usually…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Social Security and Welfare Reform

28

Mar

The public sector deficit through the looking glass

Reducing the public sector deficit has been the Coalition's number one economic goal from the start. Inheriting a record deficit in 2009/10 – Labour’s last year –…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Economic Policy

20

Mar

Osborne's budget challenge and the spirit of 97

George Osborne’s problem is how to rid himself of the spirit of ’97. Seeing as this year ranks second only to 1945 in the roll-call of Labour triumphs and Tory disasters, this may…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Economic Policy

06

Feb

Troubled waters: Living standards and water bills

Ofwat announced yesterday that, from April, water and sewerage bills will be increasing by an average of 3.5%, or up by £13 to £388 annually (this of course masks significant…

  • Author: Adam Tinson
  • Category: Services

20

Dec

A decade undone in a year?

Last week DCLG released its figures for the Indices of Economic Deprivation for England from 1999 to 2009. The figures provide a limited time series counterpart to the Indices of…

  • Author: Adam Tinson
  • Category: Income and Poverty

03

Dec

The implications of a freeze on benefits

It has been widely rumoured that the Chancellor will announce in the Autumn Statement on Wednesday that the value of some benefits will be frozen to reduce the public sector…

  • Author: Hannah Aldridge
  • Category: Social Security and Welfare Reform

28

Nov

70 years on, we've never been further away from Beveridge?

For those people celebrating the 70th anniversary of his report this week, the reality is that we have never been further away from Beveridge than we are now. Another graph from…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Social Security and Welfare Reform

31

Oct

Pursuing, and gaining from, growth

Two major reports on the future of the UK economy came out today – one from a politician who was elected to parliament in 1966, one from a think tank set up in 2005. Lord…

  • Author: Tom MacInnes
  • Category: Economic Policy

16

Oct

Forecasting failure

The Office for Budget Responsibility today published their “Forecast Evaluation Report” – an explanation of why their predictions for economic growth have been wrong. It’s…

  • Author: Tom MacInnes
  • Category: Economic Policy

03

Sep

A New Golden Rule

The proposal for a new ‘golden rule’ for the conduct of macroeconomic policy, published in a new report by the Fabian Society, takes our earlier arguments about the importance of…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Economic Policy

02

Dec

Was Osborne right on public sector pay?

George Osborne's claims on public sector pay in the Autumn statement do not stand up to scrutiny. In his statement to parliament on 29 November, George Osborne said the…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Work and Pay

01

Dec

New national report on poverty

Our latest Monitoring Poverty and Social Exclusion Report shows that the Government’s anti poverty strategy cannot succeed without the creation of millions of jobs. Worryingly, the…

  • Authors: Hannah Aldridge, Tom MacInnes
  • Category: Income and Poverty

30

Nov

Bad news - households are paying off their credit card bills

Back in October, the text of the Prime Minister’s speech to the Conservative party conference called upon households to pay off their credit card debts . By the time he came to…

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Economic Policy

11

Oct

Duncan Smith loses war on poverty

Poverty forecasting is a dodgy business but if it must be done, it is best it is done by someone both reputable and competent.  None fits this bill better than the IFS. …

  • Author: Peter Kenway
  • Category: Income and Poverty