The high street, once a popular choice for shoppers, has faced many changes in recent years. The increase of online shopping is a clear indicator, as 1 in 3 of us will exclusively use the internet to shop this Christmas. Annette Picardo, Managing Director in the UK for Etsy, explains how people are moving towards a more mindful and conscious way of shopping. New independent research finds that people feel happier when supporting their local community and local businesses.
This is Money has relentlessly campaigned to fight online fraud – and in a major victory, Britain's biggest banks are now trialling a new system to trace stolen money. Is the end nigh for scammers? Editor Simon Lambert and host Georgie Frost talk about bank fraud and our long-running campaign to help protect our readers from the growing crime. We also talk through new rules to come in early next year that will spell out exactly what banks have to do to help prevent customers falling victim of bank transfer scams and why we launched our Beat the Scammers section in 2016. Elsewhere, if you are in the market for a credit card, one of the more eye catching is Virgin Money's offering which could get you a trip to New York with its new bumper sign-up offer – but what's the catch?
We also talk about the property market and how estate agents – especially across London and the South East - have come under pressure since the Brexit vote, which has triggered a considerable slowdown. This has seen Foxtons announcing branch closures this week. And rather than the gloom and doom predictions of a potential house price crash, Simon asks: are house prices preparing to go on something of a run?
This year, Saturday November 10th was Equal Pay Day – the day the Fawcett Society calculates that women, on average, essentially start working for free, because of the gender pay gap. But Office for National Statistics calculated just a few weeks back that the pay gap is the lowest it’s ever been on record. Yet Equal Pay Day hasn’t moved. It’s the same day as it was last year. A new IEA briefing, written by Associate Director Kate Andrews and Chief Economist Julian Jessop, argues that this is a result of calculating the gender pay gap in order to obtain a figure nearly 60% higher than the official data. Kate Andrews has put together a podcast to provide ‘alternative listening’ for those who don’t want to engage in fear-mongering around women in the workplace. Kate brings together women from across the political spectrum, with diverse background and views, but who all agree on one thing – that’s that there’s a positive story to tell about women who work. She asks them all: ‘What positive message do you want to send to women today’, and also asks them for a practical policy proposal to help tackle the issues that working women still face.
After the market falls in October, Ed Bowsher asks: why was there a correction, and more importantly, where next for markets? Ed speaks to Sean Corrigan, Principal at Cantillon Consulting and Russ Mould from AJ Bell.
Is austerity really coming to an end? And are the rich getting richer thanks to the Government? In the This is Money podcast this week, editor Simon Lambert, assistant editor Lee Boyce and host Georgie Frost analyse the 2018 Budget. Money for the NHS, little extras for schools, cash for roads, help for the High Street and the baby rabbit in the hat - pulling the rise in the basic and higher rate tax thresholds to £12,500 and £50,000, respectively, a year earlier than promised. We also talk about what a no Brexit deal means for interest rates? We heard from the Bank of England this week about the likely impact such a scenario could have on interest rates and how quickly they will go up – or not. Despite sticking this week to 0.75%, the decision came with a few notes of warning – largely that it was based on a 'smooth transition' for Brexit. And finally, we report on the latest in our 'stop the private parking sharks' campaign - how the good people of Essex town Basildon have taken to the streets to protest about one firm running a car park and dishing out charges.
“The era of austerity is finally coming to an end”, announced Philip Hammond in his Budget Day speech. Well it certainly seemed like it, judging by the Chancellor’s policy announcements, which included a slew of new spending commitments – all with very little detail on how any of it was to be funded. There were pledges of more than £20bn in additional annual funding for the NHS by 2023, an extra £779m for social care, £1bn for the armed forces and £675m for a ‘Future High Streets’ fund, to name but a few. But with UK debt still approaching 88%, the highest level since 1966, is it fair or just to turn on the spending taps and ask the next generation to carry the burden and eventually foot the bill.
So, was this an almost-Halloween Budget full of taxation tricks and unfunded treats? Joining us to give their take on yesterday’s Budget, policy changes and spending commitments is Mark Littlewood, Director General at the IEA and Kate Andrews, Associate Director at the IEA.
This week on Live from Lord North Street, the IEA’s Digital Manager Darren Grimes sat down with the Director of FREER, Rebecca Lowe and the IEA's Editorial Manager Madeline Grant. Are millennials giving top marks to Marx - or could they be more libertarian than we think? Rebecca and Madeline put the stereotype of the millennial Marxist under the spotlight and examine where things might not be so clear cut. Finally, they look at ways free markets can craft a positive case for capitalism.
As stock market turmoil spreads across the globe, the advice is to keep calm and carry on, folks. In the latest This is Money podcast, editor Simon Lambert and host Georgie Frost discuss what's causing it, how long will it go on for and how concerned we should be. Because we're a positive bunch, we also reveal the shares that have rocketed over the last five years, some by more than 1,000 per cent. Also, we answer a reader query about state pensions - can couples inherit it from each other and how much might they get? Elsewhere, we take a look at the best way to clear your buy-to-let loan and discover how to bag a property bargain.
The Chancellor, Philip Hammond, is reportedly obsessed with the issue of productivity; whilst most of the electorate remain baffled. We talk to Vicky Pryce, Chief Economic Adviser and board member at the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), who draws on her experience of being ‘responsible’ for productivity targets under the last Labour Government. Numerous explanations have been put forward for the UK’s poor productivity performance since 2008. Recent research suggests we have a particularly long tail of poorly performing companies in the UK, who fail to adopt innovations of the leading 1%. We consider this diagnosis next to many others, and speculate on what a newly formulated Industrial Strategy might do to help.