At the last budget, when the Office for Budget Responsibility said it had lost faith in Britain’s ability to generate strong productivity growth, and with it inflation-busting wage rises, the IFS warned that average earnings were on course to be £1,400 a year lower in 2021 than had been forecast in 2016. In addition, borrowing was likely to be £12bn higher in 2021 than previously predicted. … [Read more...] about Hammond is an honourable Tory. Now is the time to show it
Observer business agenda
“As a researcher who has spent my whole career in South Sulawesi, I’m very concerned about the condition of the prehistoric caves here, which are now surrounded by cement and marble mining,” said Budianto Hakim, an Indonesian archaeologist who was involved in the recent research on the rock art. … [Read more...] about World’s oldest art under threat from cement mining in Indonesia
This, aligned as it was with the explicit promise of bounty to come in next year’s comprehensive spending review, was the foundation of May’s pitch to the country – and marked the launch of the government’s general election campaign for 2022. In which context: her identification of the “Jeremy Corbyn party” as a sectarian offshoot from the mainstream Labour tradition – and a betrayal of it – recalled Tony Blair’s claim in the mid-90s that the Conservatives had “lurched to the right” and that one-nation Tories should gather under his newly raised “big tent”. May has a modest bivouac at best. But you could see what she was trying to do. … [Read more...] about Theresa May’s conference speech: what’s the verdict?
Until recently, Airbnb’s rise has been largely embraced by politicians and governments, who were quick to hail it as an exemplar of the “sharing economy”. George Osborne unveiled plans in his last budget that will allow hosts on sites such as Airbnb to earn £1,000 in additional untaxed income by sharing their homes. In March, in a sign that it has truly come of age, Airbnb won a contract to provide a reported 20,000 rooms for this year’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. … [Read more...] about From Berlin to Barcelona; will Airbnb ruin our most loved cities?
The number of New York City apartments and private rooms rented through Airbnb rocketed from about 2,650 in 2010 to 16,500 in just the first five months of 2014, state attorney general Eric Schneiderman’s office said in an October report. Critics say such services shrink the amount of available housing by creating incentives to convert apartments into de facto hotel rooms, rather than rent them to residents. … [Read more...] about New York City council to consider regulation of Airbnb sharing economy