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Lower borrowing than expected, strong retail sales

29 replies

longfingernails · 21/04/2011 21:30

www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/currency/8467368/Pound-climbs-as-retail-sales-and-borrowings-surprise.html

Our deficit is still an eyewatering £141bn, but that is at least £4bn less than forecast.

In general, there is good news from the private sector too. Shops are teeming and more new cars are being sold.

Of course, the BBC has chosen to hide this news well - it isn't even linked on their front page, because it doesn't fit their far-left worldview. But I am sure Labour mumsnetters will be much more eager to sing the praises of George Osborne.

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headfairy · 21/04/2011 21:32

Or.... The government deliberately bigged up how much trouble we were in, over estimating the deficit so that when they delivered the good news they'd look like the good guys....

just offering the alternate view.

CristinaTheAstonishing · 21/04/2011 21:34

I heard this on Radio 4. BBC Radio 4. There goes your conspiracy theory.

Niceguy2 · 22/04/2011 00:03

Sometimes I do wonder if in some people's eyes, the Tories could do anything right. No doubt if David Cameron waved his magic wand and magic'ed away every world problem, people would claim the Tories were nasty for not giving them anything to moan about!

CristinaTheAstonishing · 22/04/2011 00:07

Makes you think, doesn't it, just why are the Tories hated so much? Must be a good reason.

GiddyPickle · 22/04/2011 00:17

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GiddyPickle · 22/04/2011 00:21

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CristinaTheAstonishing · 22/04/2011 08:02

Giddy - I think we listen to the same programmes :)

My salary has been frozen for two years - I couldn't give a fig about the green shoots, I'm not going out spending.

Chil1234 · 22/04/2011 08:28

We've had a few bits of relatively good news recently. Inflation and unemployment stats slightly down, retail sales slightly up etc. It's all important information that we should know about, but I think the BBC and other news orgs are right not to read too much into them or make wild speculations that it is the end of the problem. One improving stat doesn't make a recovery. FWIW, I don't think the goverment deliberately 'bigged up' the state of the problem. And, if they did, Alistair Darling was right there with them. I think we still have a long way to go before we're out of the woods.

longfingernails · 22/04/2011 08:50

My prediction is that Q1 growth will be very moderate (0.5% or so), and Q2 might even be negative, because of the huge amount of money lost due to the extended Bank Holiday season. On top of that, things will be extremely volatile - growth will yo-yo up and down.

But the least that Labour and their BBC acolytes could do is acknowledge that there is good news for now!

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Niceguy2 · 22/04/2011 08:58

I predict our growth I think will continue to limp along for 2012. I think the cuts so often derided have stabilised confidence in our economy.

The key question in my mind now is whether or not the US have what it takes to get their deficit under control. I'm not sure. Plus the American's have rather strange priorities. I mean in the UK, when faced with cuts, even the Tories ringfenced the NHS budget. In the US, they have happily slashed Medicare, social security etc but instead have ring fenced defence!?!? Esp bizzare given they already spend 50% of all the money spent on defence in the world.

Their recent hardwon agreement was pitiful and a fraction of what's needed if they are seriously going to tackle their deficit and not just pay lip service.

Mark my words, unless the yanks can sort their own house out, when they catch a cold, we'll all suffer.

GiddyPickle · 22/04/2011 09:24

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Chil1234 · 22/04/2011 11:29

"But the least that Labour and their BBC acolytes could do is acknowledge that there is good news for now"..... The BBC all day yesterday kept referring to an 'unexpected jump in retail sales'. You can't expect a news organisation to qualify bulletins as being 'good news' or 'bad news'... that's for the listener to decide for themselves from the information presented. Tip - switch to R4 where they do it properly.

longfingernails · 22/04/2011 13:56

Radio 4 is irrelevant (though it is even more biased towards the Guardian-reading classes than other radio/TV stations)

How often does the BBC cover the levels of benefit scrounging bequeathed to this government by Labour? How about the cost of EU legislation on small business?

Compare that to the frequency with which they call public spending cuts "taking money out of the economy".

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CristinaTheAstonishing · 22/04/2011 13:58

LFN - I hear Dave had some strong words to say about benefit scroungers. I believe it was music to your ears.

longfingernails · 22/04/2011 14:04

Iain Duncan Smith is one of the great hopes for this government - but the new benefit limits are still outrageously generous.

To eliminate benefits as a lifestyle choice, we need to punish people who don't take up jobs, but that is only a small part of the answer.

The biggest part is making work more of a worthwhile choice compared to benefits. One way is through the universal credit approach - taking less away in benefit clawbacks when you start work. I fully applaud that laudable aim (though I have some quibbles about the implementation details). However, this is expensive, and will take a long time to filter through.

The second way, though, is simply to cut benefits. This is cheap and quick.

It is absurd that £400 a week is still allowed in housing benefit. It is ludicrous that 80,000 people are on disability benefits because they drink too much or are fat.

Labour showered the benefit scroungers with state largesse. I am glad that is being at least partially reversed - though the changes made so far are far too timid.

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CristinaTheAstonishing · 22/04/2011 14:07

LFN - what are you on today? You speak in hyperbole and extremes (IDS as a "great hope", "fully applaud that laudable aim")

longfingernails · 22/04/2011 14:43

Well, sorry - that is the way I write. I guess it comes out of having strong opinions.

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CarGirl · 22/04/2011 14:52

My concern is that all the civil service departures/redundancies haven't actually happened yet.................that will hit the unemployment figures in 6 months time and then continue to rise for quite some time......

ChocolateCoveredlissielou · 22/04/2011 14:59

LFN, dont you ever just post idle chitchat?

Chil1234 · 22/04/2011 15:41

Radio 4 is irrelevant??? Confused I listen to R4 pretty much all day and can't say I've heard 'spending cuts' referred to as 'taking money out of the economy'. They unearth quite a lot of good, controversial stuff on progs such as 'Face the Facts'... recent subjects have included 'Northern Ireland Water', 'Doctors in the Dock - the role of the GMC', 'Islamophobia - negative press stories'. If you think they should cover a subject like'the cost of EU legislation or benefit scrounging (which is already covered by the DM ad nauseam), why not give them a call?

jackstarb · 22/04/2011 16:05

I'd broadly agree with Chil. I'd say most of the time Radio 4 is reasonably impartial and non-partisan. Though, occasionally the effort to be so is almost palpable (especially for Andrew MarrSmile).

This makes sense given the R4 audience is mainly middle class, educated, and middle aged(ish). So they tend not to be very left wing, radical or easily led.

LFN - For example, BBCr4's recent series on The Story of Economics was excellent and impartial. It reminded me why commerce and the free market are amongst humanities greatest achievements. (it also dealt with the problems and issues).

Chil1234 · 22/04/2011 16:43

I enjoyed that series as well. I think the only time I'm conscious of R4 being deliberately left-wing is during editions of the News Quiz :) Jeremy Hardy et al don't take any Coalition prisoners but he's balanced out by the blue-rinse nazis that ring 'Any Answers' with opinions remarkably aligned to LFN's.... . LOL!

HHLimbo · 22/04/2011 17:00

The article says "sales fell 0.9pc the previous month." But we had "a surprise 0.2pc month-on-month rise in retail sales volumes in March."

So sales dropped 0.9%, then rose by 0.2%.
Does anyone else see this is not growth? Over the 2 months, we have lost 0.7%. Its like saying I lost £90 gambling, then won £20, so everything is great.

The only consolation is that we have not dropped even further into recession (again).

Chil1234 · 22/04/2011 17:58

@HHLimbo. That's not the correct interpretation. The % increase or decrease is by month. So this Feb did worse than last Feb but this March is higher than last March. Because Feb and March might be quite different base numbers, you can't just add them together and say 'we're down .7% overall'... we have to wait for the quarterly stats to see what the totals are. March 2010 would have been a good trading month, for example, because Easter fell on April 4th. So March 2011 did well to beat that when there were no obvious shopping events to boost sales.

jackstarb · 22/04/2011 18:15

Chil - I think they adjust for Easter. But the fact March 2011 was 'better than expected' is good. But as others have said - there's a long way to go....

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