Author Archives: Rick

The self-employment earnings timebomb

Lots of people have been poring over this week’s report on self-employment from the ONS.  I particularly liked this chart from Nathaniel Lichfield, showing annual growth in GDP, employment and self-employment.   It shows clearly how, even though employment growth fluctuated with … Continue reading

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Britain’s management problem

UK Commission for Education and Skills (UKCES) recently published a wide-ranging report on the state of the UK labour market. It noted that, while the UK has been good at keeping people in work, it has not grown as fast … Continue reading

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Italian tragedy

Anyone with an interest in government finances and public spending must, by now, have developed a morbid fascination with Italy. The country slid into recession again this month, wiping out not only its post-recession growth but much of its growth since it … Continue reading

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Economy in ‘wait and see’ mode

Good news on the economy last week as the ONS upped its estimate of annual GDP growth slightly, by 0.1 percent. The employment figures, also released last week, showed an improvement on the previous quarter but a slight fall from the previous month. … Continue reading

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Turbo greying

Credit ratings agency Moody’s published a report on ageing last week. Using the recently updated UN population projections, it mapped the population change in each country. It concluded that the unprecedented pace of ageing will slow down economic growth over the next … Continue reading

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Sector-wide groupthink

Chris Dillow posted about some research on peer group behaviour among firms. Companies, it seems, are prone to herd like behaviour: We find that a firm’s tendency to engage in financial misconduct increases with the misconduct rates of neighboring firms. This … Continue reading

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Low pay and high benefit costs a feature of the 2010s

Apparently, there was a report out on the rise of in-work housing benefit earlier this week. The Labour Party, which commissioned the research by the House of Commons Library, has not published the figures, which is a shame, because all sorts … Continue reading

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War – the mother of the tech sector

Bloomberg reports that investment in Israeli technology firms has surged since the start of the conflict in Gaza. Since the conflict escalated six weeks ago after the abduction of three Israeli teenagers, investors have kicked $598 million into the country’s tech … Continue reading

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Self-employed: Newbies or old-timers, the economics are still dire

The strange story of the rise in self-employment just got stranger. Chris Giles wrote a piece in the FT this week arguing that most of the increase is due not to lots more people becoming self-employed but to lots more people … Continue reading

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Public sector v self-employment: A wager

You have probably heard about the wager between Jonathan Portes and Andrew Lilico about how much inflation will rise with economic growth. Not to be outdone, Ben Dellot and I have had a bet about the rise in self-employment and … Continue reading

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