European banks have been shrinking since the financial crisis, dwindling both in terms of their market value, number of branches and staff. Their fortunes have suffered and profits fallen as a result of stricter regulations, general economic weakness and low interest rates.
It’s unlikely that they will ever be the same again. All the more so as the decline in Europe’s over-reliance on banks could present new opportunities for the region to develop much-needed alternative financing channels. Read more
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About half of UK mortgages are at a floating rate, and are likely to quickly benefit from yesterday’s interest rate cut to a record low. The proportion of such loans has rapidly declined over the past four years, from more than 70 per cent in 2012.
Over 4m factory jobs were lost in the EU in the seven years to 2015, an 11 per cent drop. Nearly 4m were lost in construction. Professional services, health and education gained but overall 2m fewer people are in employment than in 2008.
UK real wages have fell by -10.4 per cent between 2007 and the end of 2015, the most severe fall in the OECD along with Greece, according to TUC analysis. Apart from Portugal, all other OECD countries saw real wages increase. The UK is the only country in this grouping to have seen wages go down couples with a strong performance in employment. The UK’s employment rate is indeed at a record levels, some 5 percentage points above the OECD average.
Shinzo Abe launched a new ¥4.6tn ($45bn) stimulus to boost the country’s weak consumption. Real private final consumption in Japan shrank by more than 1 per cent in the three years to the first quarter 2016, compared to a rise of 5 per cent in the EU and more than 8 per cent in the US.
Russia is the only country of the G20 major economies where people would rather Donald Trump was the next President of the US than Hillary Clinton, according to a survey of 20,000 people in every G20 country.
The fate of EU migrants in the UK hangs in the balance, but the UK government has stated that those who have lived “continuously and lawfully” in the country for at least five years will automatically have a permanent right to reside.
The five years will start to count once Britain has officially left the European Union, which will most likely happen two years after Article 50 is triggered thereby starting the ‘divorce’ proceedings. Read more
The share of home ownership in the US slipped below 63 per cent in the second quarter of this year for the first time since 1965. On an annual basis, US home ownership has fallen since 2006, the longest period of decline since records began.
The Federal Reserve is more optimistic about the US labour market but warned ‘business fixed investment has been soft’. Annual growth slowed from more than 12 per cent in 2012 to 2 per cent in the first quarter this year.
Italy’s unemployment rate rose to 11.6 per cent in June. Although this is a marginal rise, it is worrying for a country that is struggling to recover after multiple recessions and weak growth.
Yet there are reasons to remain optimistic. Read more
Turkey experienced a period of exceptional growth and institutional transformation in the run-up to the global financial crisis. The country invested in infrastructure, education and health in addition to adopting a number of market-oriented reforms. Data shows that in the years prior to 2008, Turkey grew at a pace similar to that of China.
The US and the UK have the largest gap in trust on institutions between the “informed public” – educated, media-savvy and high-income – and the “mass population”. The gap has been widening in recent years.
Global real food prices rose by 4 per cent in June over the previous month- the fifth consecutive rise and the largest monthly increase since July 2012. But food price levels are still 25 lower than in March 2008.
When Margaret Thatcher became the first female UK premier in 1979 only 3 per cent of MPs were women. The share is 10 times higher now. But the number of female MPs since 1918 – at 452- is lower than the number of men in parliament today.
The majority of EU population plans to spend the 2016 holidays at home, the largest proportion being Greeks. Foreign trips are more popular in the UK, Germany and Belgium, where more than eight in 10 people plan to travel abroad.
Going in to the race, Froome’s imperial guard of Mikel Landa, Mikel Nieve, Wout Poels, Sergio Henao and Geraint Thomas had four mountain stage wins and seven top-ten general classification finishes in grand tours, as well as more than a dozen other victories in road cycling’s second tier of races. In almost any other team, any of these riders would be a team leader. Read more
Seven years after the financial crisis, Italy’s property market has still not recovered. House prices in the country fell 1.2 per cent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2016, the only drop among major EU countries. In contrast, house prices in the region expanded at an average of 4 per cent over the same period.
By Richard Dobbs and Anu Madgavkar (McKinsey & Company)
Since the end of World War II, people in advanced economies could rightly assume that they and their children would grow up to be better off than their parents and grandparents. With the exception of the stagflation period in the 1970s, almost all households experienced rising incomes, both before and after taxes and transfers, thanks to strong GDP and employment growth. Read more
The IMF forecasts advance nations to grow at 1.8 per cent this year, down from 2.4 per cent forecast last year. Spain is expected to grow faster than the US while UK growth is revised down to 1.7 per cent. Japan is set for almost no gain.
Britain’s House of Commons has voted resoundingly in favour of renewing the country’s nuclear deterrent, the Trident submarine programme, to the bitter disappointment of the 177 MPs who voted against it and the delight of the 472 in favour.
But internal politics aside, the vote should hardly come as a surprise: no nuclear weapon-possessing country is preparing to give up its nuclear arsenal for the foreseeable future. Read more