Economics

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    Post-Brexit work visa quotas on EU nationals will likely favour graduates

Post-Brexit work visa quotas on EU nationals will likely favour graduates

Had things gone as most commentators expected, the UK would now be entering hard Brexit talks with the near certainty of leaving the single market and/or customs union and the consequent ending of free movement of people from the European Union. Two weeks later and that near certainty no longer seems as certain, with murmurings of a softer Brexit […]

What the European Commission missed in its reflection paper

The European Commission’s recent reflection paper on deepening economic and monetary union raises several key questions about the past and future of the Eurozone. The paper certainly represents a positive contribution to the ongoing process of European integration, after the impasse caused by the deep and prolonged economic crisis, the political developments in some European countries (including the Brexit referendum) and […]

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    Why the pressure for higher minimum wages is gaining traction in Africa

Why the pressure for higher minimum wages is gaining traction in Africa

On 1 May this year, while observing Labour Day celebrations, Kenya’s President, Uhuru Kenyatta, announced an 18 per cent hike in the minimum wage, the country’s most ambitious raise in just about a decade and one that scaled up the minimum wage to Kes 20,296 – about US$ 196.8. (Computation based on the gazetted minimum wage for Nairobi, Mombasa […]

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    The role of foreign investors in the London residential market

The role of foreign investors in the London residential market

LSE London have just completed a study of the role of overseas investors in the London residential market for the Greater London Authority, looking at the proportion of new homes sold to buyers who live abroad and at the proportion of those homes left empty; and the contribution of overseas sales and finance to new development. They found that:

Significant proportions of […]

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    Without an agreed legal definition of protectionism, we can’t measure it

Without an agreed legal definition of protectionism, we can’t measure it

One word was conspicuous by its absence in the communiques on trade that came out of three meetings this year of the world’s finance chiefs. The G20 finance ministers, the International Monetary and Financial Committee and the G7 finance ministers all used the same sentence when it came to trade: “We are working to strengthen the contribution of trade […]

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    A tentative, ‘me-too’ approach to industrial strategy will lead us nowhere

A tentative, ‘me-too’ approach to industrial strategy will lead us nowhere

In some ways, the ambition to have a successful industrial strategy is like the ambition to have a perfect body. Most people are shy about admitting it. In the UK’s case, there is an additional problem; we are addicted to good news, whether it is real or fake. For example, despite having no supporting evidence, Brexit has been widely […]

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    Time to acknowledge the role of consumers in responsible innovation

Time to acknowledge the role of consumers in responsible innovation

In light of multiple (social, economic, ecological) problems humanity is facing, it is no surprise that scholarly interest in responsible innovation (or responsible research and innovation) has gained momentum. In other words, more and more of our fellow ivory tower inhabitants are working on aligning research and innovation better with society’s needs, values, and problems (there is also an […]

The pharmaceutical industry is at risk from Brexit

Despite numerous debates about the impact of Brexit, the pharmaceutical industry seems to be less eye-catching than other sectors like the manufacturing supply chain and financial services. However, pharmaceuticals are one of the EU’s most important and fastest-growing industries, and they benefit greatly from EU integration.

The pharmaceutical sector in the EU has increased from €125 billion to €225 billion […]

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    It’s not that London is too big, but that other large UK cities are too small

It’s not that London is too big, but that other large UK cities are too small

The elections are barely behind us now, and we should keep asking the question, ‘What are the economic forces polarising the UK?’ A big part of the story concerns the geographical concentration of economic activity in London (and the South East). Is this concentration good for those who live or work in London but bad for those who don’t? […]

Compassionate capitalism: Lessons from medieval Cambridge

Contemporary businesses are frequently challenged to invest the profits from their commercial successes into projects that benefit society. Yet the idea that the pursuit of international competitiveness should also promote the common good is not a new one. It began as early as the medieval period!

England in the late thirteenth century had a dynamic economy. Legal advances created a […]

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    The Conservative Manifesto: A hallucinatory celebration of the state

The Conservative Manifesto: A hallucinatory celebration of the state

“We need a state that is strong and strategic, nimble and responsive to the needs of people”. (p.8)

The 2017 Conservative Manifesto speaks highly of the state, and it speaks highly of the market. But even by the standards of enthusiasm in a political manifesto, this text operates in a fiction of archetypes. The juxtaposition of the manifesto’s celebration of […]

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    What’s happening with real wages and living standards in the UK?

What’s happening with real wages and living standards in the UK?

As the election season progresses, an evaluation of the current labour market trends in the UK, and of possible future movements, is of significant importance is assessing the credibility of the parties’ manifesto proposals on work. This is particularly the case as, since the global financial crisis of 2007/08, workers’ real wages and family living standards in the UK […]

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    How the Bank of France increased liquidity at no fiscal risk in the 1800’s

How the Bank of France increased liquidity at no fiscal risk in the 1800’s

The last financial crises highlight the importance of operational procedures used by central banks to cool down financial distress. To fulfill their mandate of financial stability, central banks have always featured temporary extraordinary loans to previously ineligible financial intermediaries or to the purchases of new types of assets.

Critics of those policies insist central banks lack knowledge on their counterparties […]

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    Growing social value polarisation harms economic development

Growing social value polarisation harms economic development

A striking development in recent years has been the increased polarisation in terms of values and attitudes that many societies around the world are witnessing. This is noticeable both in public opinion surveys as well as in recent election outcomes. People are shifting to more extreme positions on many important social and economic issues and are also voting for […]

Flexible labour markets, real wages and economic recoveries

In its 2016 Employment Outlook, the OECD documents that real hourly wage growth has behaved quite differently across countries over the past ten years.

This is true even among the large European economies. Comparing the level of real hourly wages in the fourth quarter of 2015 with a counterfactual value based on the assumption that wages had grown according to […]

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    Post-Brexit industrial strategy and the complacency in the General Election

Post-Brexit industrial strategy and the complacency in the General Election

Unlike during the 2015 campaigns, the state of the economy is not at the forefront of this general election. Neither is one of the UK’s biggest economic problems: productivity. Peter Kenway and Dan Corry write that solving this problem should be the primary goal of the institutions responsible for industrial strategy.

Debate about the state of the economy was centre-stage in the 2015 election […]

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    Great Divergence: The steamship gives us clues on the impacts of globalisation

Great Divergence: The steamship gives us clues on the impacts of globalisation

How does globalisation affect development? This question has a long tradition in economics and has been much debated both in academia and in policy circles.

Neoclassical theories tell us that reducing trade barriers across countries should provide net benefits to individual economies by making markets more efficient and stimulating competition. Testing these theories, however, turns out to be difficult: rich […]

The Chinese cities that trade built

Easy access to foreign markets, unimpeded by tariffs and quotas, is considered to be an important contributor to economic growth and development, particularly for emerging economies. Less well understood is the role of uncertainty in market access (that is, uncertainty about tariffs and quotas that may be applied in the future by trade partners) in driving economic outcomes.

In recent […]

What research tells us about the avocado toast controversy

Australian millionaire and luxury property developer Tim Gurner recently suggested millennials should stop spending money on avocado toasts or expensive coffee so that they could afford to buy property. This comment started a heated debate relative to the way the young – and more generally lower income people – spend their money, and on the morality of conspicuous consumption.

The […]

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    High-speed rail boosts corporate profits but centralises high-skill jobs in big cities

High-speed rail boosts corporate profits but centralises high-skill jobs in big cities

The improvements in communications made possible by high-speed rail in France has boosted profit margins for big firms with many sites around the country, who benefit from the infrastructure. Our research has found that HSR improves their profit margins by 0.6 to 0.8 percentage points.

The study finds that the easier and faster circulation of managers across the different sites of […]