UK Number One Developed Economy For New Business

More businesses were established in the UK last year that in any of world’s other developed economies, according to accountants UHY Hacker Young. 218,000 new businesses were started in the UK in 2016, a a 6% increase on 2015. During the referendum the Remain campaign said:

“If we left, businesses would be hit by new charges… leading to job cuts, higher prices, lower wages and fewer opportunities for you and your family. Companies say they would move their business, and jobs, to other EU countries, meaning fewer jobs on the UK market.”

UHY’s Daniel Hutson said:

“The figures suggest confidence in the economic outlook, despite Brexit.”

Classic!

City Jobs Boom: Square Mile to Embark on Hiring Spree

Remember that mass exodus from the City of London that was supposed to happen after the vote to Leave? Turns out the opposite is the case. City AM reports this morning that “City firms are set to embark on a hiring spree next year”. Data from City recruiter Hays reveals that more than two-thirds of financial services firms are planning to hire more staff in the next 12 months. Their MD Mark Staniland says:

“It’s promising that despite market uncertainty, financial organisations are continuing to hire as regulatory changes come into play and digital advancements are creating the need for organisations to constantly adapt and remain up-to-date.”

City AM says “high demand for staff” has been “driven by double-digit salary growth for new hires in the capital”. A jobs boom in the City, #DespiteBrexit…

“Let’s Just Be Calm” – Despite Brexit Banking Double Bubble

A classic day of #DespiteBrexit in the City. First up German central banker Andreas Dombret, a board member of the Bundesbank, called for financial services clearing to stay in London:

“At all events, London will remain one of the world’s leading financial centres. That is why creativity and a truly global outlook will be necessary in order to place future cooperation between the EU27 and the United Kingdom on a solid legal footing. For one thing is also clear – the world’s fast-growing regions are not going to stand idly by while Europe indulges in navel gazing.”

While Italian bank Unicredit said so-called Brexit ‘disruption’ is “much ado about nothing”. Jean Pierre Mustier, Unicredit boss said:

“Let’s just be calm. [London] will remain an important centre for expertise.”

Surely the FT can’t ignore these…

Siemens to Cut European jobs, Expand in UK

Siemens, the most blue-chip of German manufacturers, is cutting some 3,000 jobs in Germany, over 1,000 across Europe and nearly 2,000 in the US. At the same time, despite the company campaigning vociferously against Brexit and threatening to with withdraw future investment, it is now investing €39 million to expand its largest UK plant in Lincoln which employs 1,500 people… 

‘Brexodus’ Was Bogus

All that talk of a ‘Brexodus’ of EU citizens following the Leave vote was bogus admits The Times, which informs us on its front page today:

“The number of EU citizens working in Britain rose to a record high in the year after the Brexit referendum, official figures revealed yesterday. Despite fears of a so-called Brexodus, 2.37 million migrants from EU states were employed between July and September, an increase of 112,000 on the same period last year.”

The Times of course say this is “despite Brexit”…

Not only that, but the number of EU citizens employed in the UK has risen every quarter this year. The Remain press’ shameless fear-mongering will have made EU citizens living in Britain uncomfortable. The good news is they didn’t buy into the Remainers’ view that they aren’t welcome in Brexit Britain.

Meanwhile, in other Despite Brexit-ry, billionaire businessman and former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg gave a resounding vote of confidence in London, saying the city is set to continue as the financial heart of Europe:

“[London will] be the financial centre of Europe for the foreseeable future. It has the things the finance industry needs: it is English speaking, it is family-friendly, it has a lot of cultures so you can attract those people here. It is a city with the best transportation and communication and scale and it is already here, so it’s hard to see that going away.”

Naturally, this was written up by the Independent: “Michael Bloomberg says London will remain Europe’s financial capital despite Brexit.” Some classics of the genre this week…

BBC Reports Positive Unqualified Economic News

Shocking scenes in the BBC Newsroom as a positive story about the UK economy is reported without the “despite Brexit” suffix qualifying the headline. Do you think the continuous mocking from Brexiteers – not least Jacob Rees-Mogg on Question Time – has resulted in a change of policy? If a memo has gone out, it is a victory for our campaign against this Remainstream media meme…

BBC: Home of Despite Brexit

Last week David Dimbleby unwisely challenged Brexit champion Jacob Rees-Mogg when he pointed out the BBC had regularly pushed the “despite brexit” agenda. A clearly riled Dimbleby tore into Rees-Mogg on Question Time:

“Can you actually specify an occasion when you’ve heard that… have you got a quotation?… Are you sure, are you sure?”

Well… how about these, all from the BBC News website…

We’re sure, Mr Dimbleby…

Double Whammy of Manufacturing Good News

Remember when they said a Leave vote would ruin British manufacturing? Aston Martin today announces a trade and investment deal with Japan worth £500 million. The luxury car manufacturer will massively expand its dealership network in the country, and will open a number of new offices including a global brand centre in Tokyo and a new HQ. At home, the five-year package will benefit Aston Martin’s factories in St Athan, Wales and Gaydon, Warwickshire. Exports from the plants will be worth £400 million. The UK beat more than 20 other countries to secure the deal…

Meanwhile Japanese car-maker Nissan has said it will increase output from its Sunderland plant by 20% to 600,000 units per year, and raise the quantity of parts sourced in the UK from 40% to 80%. Not a hint of either of these good news stories in the Guardian‘s write-up of the Japan trip and its associated trade deals, which crows: “Theresa May will have to allay Japanese fears about the impact of Brexit.” Seems to be working so far…

August Kicks Off With Brexit Good News Hat-Trick

August kicked off with yet another triple-whammy of good economic news for booming Brexit Britain. In the City this morning Moody’s lifted the ratings of several major British banks and building societies. CityAM reports:

“Santander and TSB banks and Nationwide, Coventry and Nottingham building societies have all had their deposit ratings from negative to stable, while the stable outlooks for three issuers – Close Brothers, West Bromwich Building Society and Yorkshire were maintained.”

Before the referendum, Moody’s warned that Brexit was likely to have a long-term negative impact on bank credit ratings. No need to be so moody after all…

Staying with the banking sector, Deutsche Bank yesterday signed a 25-year commitment to a new London headquarters. The bank has signed up for a minimum of 469,000 sq ft of office space and has taken an option allowing it to expand further at a later date. About 5,000 employees will move to the new office when work is completed in 2023. That’s the same Deutsche Bank that just last month stoked up remainstream media headlines with its warning that it would downsize its London operation. Actions speak louder than words…

Last but not least, British manufacturing continues to strengthen: the sector grew at a faster rate last month than EU countries including France, Spain and Ireland. British factories are on a hiring spree as they scramble to keep up with a booming global order book. The IHS Markit purchasing managers’ index rose to 55.1 in July, from 54.2 in June. Manufacturing number-crunchers said they saw a “significant boost” in activity. A cracking summer to be had in booming Brexit Britain

A Classic of the Genre

Yesterday’s hat-trick of Brexit good news is covered the only way the FT knows how…

Amazon, Mini, EasyJet in Brexit Good News Hat-Trick

A hat-trick of #DespiteBrexit good news today, as three major employers strengthen their commitment to Brexit Britain. EasyJet has announced its largest ever intake of new cabin crew, recruiting an enormous 1,200 extra staff. More than half of that number will be based at London Gatwick. EasyJet became notorious for its sky-high levels of Remain rhetoric before the EU referendum; chief executive Carolyn McCall said Brexit “would not be good at all” for the airline. Good for those extra staff, though…

From the skies to the roads: BMW have announced that the new electric model of the iconic Mini will be manufactured in the UK, not in Germany. The car will be built at the firm’s Cowley plant, near Oxford. Business Secretary Greg Clark said the move was a sign that the UK is now “the go-to place in the world for the next generation of vehicles“. BMW were involved in a letter from car industry executives ‘leaked’ to the Guardian which claimed:

“For BMW Group, more than half of Minis built and virtually all the engines and components made in the UK are exported to the EU, with over 150,000 new cars and many hundreds of thousands of parts imported from Europe each year. Tariff barriers would mean higher costs and higher prices and we cannot assume that the UK would be granted free trade with Europe from outside the EU.”

But now BMW is building its new Mini in Britain…

Amazon, meanwhile, is undertaking a massive expansion of its UK headquarters. The online retailing giant says it will take up the entire 15 floors of a newly constructed building near the City. The firm had planned to only occupy 11; now 450 new staff will work there. Doug Gurr of Amazon UK said:

“The U.K. is a fantastic place to find talent and we feel good about building a global R&D center here. We’re very confident we’ll be able to recruit everyone we need.”

In a staggeringly self-contradictory sentence, Bloomberg reports:

“Amazon is expanding its space in the new building, which features a roof garden and surrounded by new cafes and restaurants, amid nervousness in the property market created by uncertainty over the nature of the U.K.’s divorce from the EU.”

Three more reasons to believe in Brexit Britain…

City Confident as Hiring Rates Rocket

City employers’ confidence is high as hiring rates rocket and more roles are available than this time last year. The Robert Walters City Job Index finds the number of Square Mile jobs rose 17% in June compared to the same month in 2016. Chris Hickey, Robert Walters’ chief executive for UK, Middle East and Africa, said:

“It is extremely encouraging to see that the number of roles has risen following the election, as has the number of jobseeking professionals, suggesting an increase in confidence among both candidates and employers.”

The news comes in stark contrast to the ‘brexodus’ from the City widely predicted by remain campaigners; the survey went unreported in the remain press. Funny that…

Aldi Creates 4,000 New Jobs #DespiteBrexit

After the referendum Remain soothsayers predicted disaster for Aldi. The FT reported:

Aldi and Lidl face threat from weak pound – Aldi and Lidl face having their advance against the Big Four supermarkets checked… A fall in sterling will push prices up for everyone who sources products from Europe, but Aldi and Lidl will be affected more than most

How’d that one work out? Aldi today announced it will create 4,000 new jobs after a “surge in sales”. Aldi also said it remains on course to open 300 new stores, taking its presence from 700 to 1,000 shops by 2022. CEO Matthew Barnes emphasised the business’s growth prospects:

“We need more high-performing individuals to help us achieve our growth plans.”

The Remain dinner party class should pop down to Aldi…

Bloomberg: City Safe Despite Brexit

Bloomberg – a £250,000 donor to the Remain campaign remember – has declared the City of London “safe despite Brexit“. In a hugely enjoyable volte-face, the site today published a piece concluding that the City will be fine even in the event of a no deal Brexit:

“Despite Brexit, London’s place as a leading global financial center looks safe. Ever since Britain voted to leave the European Union, analysts have debated the City’s fate… Fortunately for the U.K., Brexit itself won’t erode the significant advantages London currently enjoys. Perhaps more importantly, neither will it help European rivals build up similar advantages… These conditions aren’t easily replicated… [London’s] competitive advantages are substantial — and won’t be easily eroded even by a hard Brexit.”

The article goes onto list the comparative advantages of London over alternative European financial centres, long adduced by Leavers: strong institutions, the pound, English law, the language and lifestyle. It’s a far cry from Bloomberg’s previous analysis on Brexit, the most extreme of which was the now infamous “71% of economists” survey which predicted a post-Referendum recession in 2016. Guido crowns this the King of Despite Brexit stories…

British Manufacturers’ Order Books At 29 Year High

UK manufacturers’ order books are at their highest level since August 1988. A CBI survey of 464 firms found a “broad-based improvement” in 13 out of 17 manufacturing sub-sectors, with food, drink and tobacco and chemicals leading the British-made boom. Meanwhile, export orders rocketed to a 22-year high. CBI Chief Economist Rain Newton-Smith said:

“Britain’s manufacturers are continuing to see demand for “Made in Britain” goods rise with the temperature. Total and export order books are at highs not seen for decades, and output growth remains robust.”

This is the same CBI that warned before Brexit that an out vote would cause a “serious economic shock“, set to cost £1 billion to the economy and threaten nearly 1 million jobs. This time last year, 70% of surveyed city economists predicted the UK would by now be in recession. Experts…

£12 Billion Allied Irish Banks to Float in London

Britain’s Brexit IPO boom continues with the news that the Irish government will float state-owned Allied Irish Banks (AIB) in London and in Dublin. City AM reports the bank could be valued at as much as €12 billion, making it London’s biggest flotation since the 2011 Glencore IPO, and one of the City’s largest listings for two decades. Figures released earlier this month showed 20 IPOs took place in London during the first quarter of this year, raising £1.83 billion, up on Q1 2016, which saw 18 IPOs, raising £1.79 billion. This boom makes a mockery of market doom-mongers such as EY, who warned after Brexit: “IPO activity can be expected to largely cease in the next 12 months”. How’s that working out? 

Lloyds Chairman: City Could Weather “No Deal” Brexit

The chairman of Lloyds Banking Group Lord Blackwell has said the City can weather a “no deal” Brexit. In comments this morning reported by City AM, Blackwell said:

“I’m not complacent, but I do think London and UK financial services can weather a situation where there is ‘no deal’… There is no single centre in Europe that is likely to emerge as being able to replace London.”

Blackwell’s comments come a month after Bank of England Governor Mark Carney warned the City was not doing enough to prepare for a no deal outcome. In a speech Carney said: “Prudent planning means that you have to also plan for a shorter time horizon and a more extreme outcome… we’ll be absolutely clear that is not in the best interest of the EU 27 or the United Kingdom or the global system as a whole.” Firms seem more confident…

£3.6 Billion Fund Lists in London Despite Brexit

Given how the slightest hint of a bad news story from the City is seized upon by certain elements of the media, it’s interesting that this one has gone under the radar. US billionaire Bill Ackman’s £3.6 billion fund Pershing Square Holdings, which initially listed in Amsterdam some years ago, has listed on the London Stock Exchange today. The move clearly reinforces London’s attractiveness to international fund managers despite the doom and gloom from Remainers. Ackman explicitly says today that Brexit has not affected London’s stature as a global financial stature and that listing in London rather than Amsterdam improves market access and liquidity. As a City source puts it:

“No one is pretending Brexit wont present real challenges but in business we deal in facts and the facts show London markets remaining resilient and open to investors around the world. London’s unique financial ecosystem continues to drive global economic growth benefiting both the UK and European economies.”

Q1 2017 saw 20 IPOs in London raising £1.83 billion. Compare that to Q1 2016, which saw 18 IPOs, raising £1.79 billion. Market watchers EY warned after Brexit: “IPO activity can be expected to largely cease in the next 12 months”. £2.6 billion has been raised in Q1 2017 by London-listed funds, up more than 100 per cent year-on-year…

Item Club Quadruples GDP Forecast

Independent economic forecaster the Item Club – sponsored by City professional services giant EY –  today reports a headline prediction of 1.8% GDP growth for 2017. This is well up on even the 1.3% prediction it made last October. And it is incredibly well up on its post-referendum forecast…

The Item Club sent shock-waves through the City last summer when it downgraded its forecast for 2017 GDP growth to an absolutely dismal 0.4% after the Brexit vote. This prediction of dread set much of the business media agenda: the Item Club is taken seriously because it uses the same economic models as the Treasury. Between July 2016 and today the Item Club has revised up its forecast by an eye-popping 1.4%…

Peter Spencer, chief economic advisor to the Item Club, said today:

“Although the starting gun for Brexit has just been fired, the UK economy has been adjusting to life outside the EU since the referendum…”

And the Item Club has been adjusting its numbers…

Siemens U-Turns, Now Talking Up Brexit Opportunities

Siemens is Europe’s biggest manufacturing firm and employs 15,000 people in the UK. During the referendum the company was a paid-up member of Project Fear, sending out doom-mongering statements threatening to pull investment from Britain in the event of a Leave vote:

“Brexit would disrupt the economy in the short-term and we believe that uncertainty about the UK’s future relationship with the EU could have more significant and negative long-term effects… [this] could make the UK a less attractive place to do business and may become a factor when Siemens is considering future investment here.”

Yesterday, Siemens chief executive Joe Kaeser met Theresa May at Downing Street where he said he was “confident and optimistic” about the “big opportunities” in Brexit Britain:

“There is no reason not to invest tomorrow, if there is a demand and a commitment from the customer. 

[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

Former public schoolboy Chuka Umunna told the  ‘Exit From Brexit Dinner’…

“Remainians, Remoaners, I don’t care what the label is, I’m proud. It’s fashionable to label everyone in this room as the liberal metropolitan elite . . . This caricature is promoted by a bunch of former public schoolboys!” 

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