Archive for the ‘Politics and economics’ Category

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What recession?

January 28, 2011

In the last recession I worked out three measures to determine the state of the country’s economy, and how I could tell things were picking up.

The first was the number of people on public transport during the rush hour. My logic is that no-one in their right mind would travel into London during the rush hour unless they had to. And the primary reason they have to is because they have a job. The number of empty seats, or conversely the number of people standing, on the train in the morning is a good proxy for the number of people employed and therefore the state of the economy.

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Why MPs’ expenses are good for the economy

June 21, 2009

I think the current ongoing fuss about MPs’ expenses is good for the economic recovery of the UK.

What fuels the economy?

Well economic health is all about confidence. Traders, especially on the stock market, behave generally as a herd – if the herd takes fright they all run. So stories about economic failure, increasing unemployment, shops closing, firms going bankrupt and the size of the national debt all fuel the fear, both among traders and the general public. This fear breeds more fear, so people stop spending, firms stop investing, banks stop lending and it all heads for the cliff.

So how does MPs fiddling their expenses help?

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