Interesting interview on Amanpour tonight

Guests were a person from the UK Chamber of Commerce, and an Editor from Bloomberg.

A recent report claimed that the UK, alone in Europe, will see it’s economy shrink this year.

BREXIT got a share of the blame, as the UK cut itself off from it’s largest market, and cut itself off from it’s largest source of imported labor.

The other factor that is weighing on the UK economy is the lack of investment. Productivity has barely increased since 2009. People across several services are striking because no investment has been made in facilities or staffing, in years, and they are tired of being run ragged. Some 500 people die, per week, in Emergency Rooms, waiting for overloaded staff and facilities to get around to them. Because all the government has done is “austerity”, cutting spending, cutting spending, cutting spending, with no long term plan.

What does lack of investment do for you? I saw a film on youtube that was produced by British Leyland, in the 70s. In the film, BL admits it’s plants are obsolete, admits it’s machine tools are worn out, but still puts the burden on the workers to turn out a product of acceptable quality. Of course, that plan didn’t work, and the British volume auto industry has gone extinct.

A bit of data on UK productivity: In the three decades since the Second World War, the average annual productivity growth rate (output per hour worked) was around 3.6 per cent. The following three decades saw this fall to around 2.1 per cent. From the start of the financial crisis in 2007 to 2019, this declined even further to 0.2 per cent. Demonstrating the importance of productivity for the economy and living standards, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) told us that if productivity had continued to grow at two per cent per year in the last decade, it would have meant an extra £5,000 per worker per year on average.

Now, what do we hear from DC? “Cut spending, cut spending, cut spending”. Meanwhile, “JCs” do a stealth liquidation of their companies, spending profits buying back stock, rather than investing, to better line their own pockets.

Here’s the article about UK productivity.