The first refugee to drown in 2016 is a 2-year-old boy who was trying to cross into Europe from Turkey. The child was on a boat with 39 other refugees when it slammed onto the jagged rocks of a small Greek island on Saturday
Thus, the ultra-flexible UK labour market (“with employers in the driving seat”, in the government’s own charming words) – to be enhanced by the repressive new Trade Union Act – has had the effect of causing productivity to fall. Read part one here.
Read part one here.
2015: Growth based on shaky foundations without a healthy recovery in wages
On the first day of 2016 trading the FTSE 500 index nosedived. This surprised perennially optimistic business commentators, but will not surprise those who read the EREP review of the UK economy in 2015. Read part two here.
The year 2015 has repeatedly disappointed those who had high expectations that the UK economy was back to “normal times” and destined to see significant continued economic “growth.” At the start of the year, there was a general expectation that inflation would start to rise after the sudden fall in oil prices, and that the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee would start, gently, the process of raising interest rates as “slack” in the economy disappeared.
The rotating Presidency of the Council of the European Union fell to the Netherlands on 1 January. For half a year, the country will have to tackle the various challenges that have weakened the EU over recent months.
After Sweden on Monday introduced passport checks for everyone entering the country from Denmark, Copenhagen has in turn introduced controls on its border with Germany. Both countries want to limit the number of refugees entering their territory with these measures. The much proclaimed end of the Schengen Area will become reality in 2016, some commentators predict. Others suspect that Northern Europe simply wants to exclude the weaker South from Schengen.
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