Economists Repeatedly Wrong About UK’s Pandemic Recovery

New data from the ONS shows the UK economy is now back at pre-pandemic levels, with GDP growth at 0.9% between October and November – 0.7% larger than in February 2020, just before Covid hit. Obviously good news… although not quite the news we were all told to expect…

Back in January 2021, the FT’s annual economists’ survey painted a dire picture for the year ahead:

“Economists expect the UK economic recovery in 2021 to be slower than in peer countries, because of a lower starting point, a larger services sector, low business investment and the impact of Brexit.”

The survey asked nearly 100 economists to look into their crystal balls and predict the future. Almost all of them said they “expect the size of the economy not to return to pre-pandemic levels until the third quarter of 2022”. Scrolling through the survey made for miserable reading. Unemployment, bankruptcies and the horrors of Brexit were all supposed to thwart our recovery…

Instead, growth is now higher than pre-Covid, and unemployment is estimated at 4.2% – even after the end of furlough in September. Congratulations go to Erik Britton, Patrick Minford, and Tej Parikh, who were the only economists from the FT survey to actually get it right…

mdi-timer 14 January 2022 @ 12:45 14 Jan 2022 @ 12:45 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
FT Badly Misinterprets American Defence Secretary’s Speech

The Financial Times is accused of badly misinterpreting a keynote speech made by American Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin in Singapore yesterday when giving the International Institute for Strategic Studies Fullerton lecture. In the article The Financial Times claims that:

“The US defence secretary said Britain might be more helpful as an ally if it did not focus on Asia, highlighting US concerns that forays by European allies into the Indo-Pacific could weaken defences closer to home.”

However, almost everyone else who attended the event, including the British High Commissioner to Singapore, UK diplomats and the Director General and CEO of the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) agreed that the whole tone of the lecture was the power of partnerships and the dangers of division, describing the Financial Times’ bizarre take as “odd” and “surprising”. Guido wonders whether or not the FT’s anti-Brexit editorial line is compromising its reporting on the UK…

James Crabtree, who is himself a former FT hack and was the chair of the event, has critiqued the FT concluding that “it’s hard to see that Austin’s remarks were genuinely intended to question the UK’s role in Asia in the way the story suggests”. Though the FT has subsequently updated elements of their article, the headline and crux of the story have remained the same. The British defence and diplomatic establishment is bemused at the slant of the article. Guido encourages co-conspirators to watch the event and determine for themselves whether or not the Financial Times is misleading its readers…

mdi-timer 28 July 2021 @ 11:38 28 Jul 2021 @ 11:38 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Boris Gets More Abuse than all other Party Leaders Combined

Data from the FT, who have analysed abuse MPs receive on Twitter this morning, has concluded, “The most toxic tweets came from users who mentioned the Brexit party or other hard Brexit-related terms in their user description”. Fits the mainstream narrative…

However further down the article, the FT notes that abuse towards MPs is also overwhelmingly directed at… Boris Johnson. In the two-day period after the Supreme Court’s prorogation ruling, Boris Johnson received 6,507 abusive tweets – the same as Jeremy Corbyn (3,144), Ian Blackford (2,006) and Jo Swinson (1,423) combined.

The main takeaway from the article, however, is that despite all the hysteria, only 1.8% of Tweets sent to MPs are ‘toxic’. Either MPs need to learn how to use the mute button or stop whinging…

mdi-timer 29 October 2019 @ 10:35 29 Oct 2019 @ 10:35 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Financial Times Office Evacuated Due To “Suspect Package”

The Financial Times office has been evacuated due to a “suspect package”, according to sources. All staff have left the building and Southwark Bridge has been closed. Armed police are in attendance…

UPDATE: Staff have now got the all clear after 30 minutes outside. Still a heavy police presence.

mdi-timer 16 February 2018 @ 15:29 16 Feb 2018 @ 15:29 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments