The Smith Institute’s report on the Great House Price Divide, which we published today, shows how house prices in England and Wales have changed in 179 areas over the past six years. While in inner London prices have risen by more than 30%, in most other parts of the country prices have fallen sharply – by 15% in the Midlands and by over 20% in the North. In Hartlepool prices are 48% below what they were in 2007; in Liverpool 33% down; in Lancashire 25% down; in Sheffield 18% down; in Birmingham 14% down; in Derby 18% down; and in Greater Manchester 17% down.
Finance Archives - Page 31 of 43 - NewStart
There is a now a very clear message that the UK is open for new banks and that local authorities have options they could only dream of in the past! The question now is how many of them are aware of the new opportunities to do much more than just find a safe haven for reserves. Those same reserves could be leveraged to fuel local economies and drive much needed revenue to provision local authority services.
The government’s recent announcement of a cap on payday loans and its commitment to a voluntary framework for disclosure of lending data are two pieces in a jigsaw of ensuring access to fair finance for all communities. But the whole picture will only emerge once we get real commitment to a strategic approach to tackling under-served markets.
Who’s to say whether this UCAN is the best advice centre in the country? It barely matters, no-one’s after prizes. But commissioning a blog and hearing the firsthand stories of desperation, resilience and achievement is a novel strategy of communicating the work at the sharp end of a large housing provider.
What started with slightly anarchic plantings in public places is actually a model that can begin to reconnect communities and local economies. People are thinking differently about the town as a whole too, with an edible Green Route that connects the health centre, theatre, market, station and canal towpath, bringing a sense of unity to the town and creating important habitats for pollinating insects.
I would contend that the best hope in the bleak landscape of public services and local economies lies in the adoption of place-based approaches, with or without formal central government support. It will require bold, ambitious and collaborative local political leadership; and collaboration with local business and the voluntary and community sector.
Three million unemployed was the forecast, but we remain still well below that. Perhaps those still in jobs are happy to have survived? Far from it. The 2012 Skills and Employment Survey shows that there has been a substantial drop in job-related wellbeing in recent years.
Schemes to address rising levels of household debt in the Netherlands are proving successful. What can the UK learn from their interventions, asks Clare Cummings.
News this week that the seven largest banks and building societies have agreed to publish information about their lending is very welcome. The voluntary arrangement will see banks publishing quarterly figures on loans and overdrafts to small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs), mortgage lending and unsecured personal loans by postcode. This is a hugely important first step towards reforming our financial services into a more responsible and properly functioning sector.
Yesterday the government announced the latest of its localism initiatives: a programme called 'Our Place' which aims to work with at least 100 communities to ‘design and deliver local services that focus on local priorities’.