Merryn’s blog

Merryns blog

The UK doesn’t have a housing shortage

Houses © Getty Images

We don’t have a housing shortage in the UK, we just don’t have enough of the right houses in the right plaes, says Merryn somerset Webb.

Pensioners are in pretty good financial shape, and it’s the young who are paying

Pensioners © Getty Images

Pensioners are getting a pretty good deal out of the rest of us, says Merryn Somerset Webb. It may be time to cut back a bit.

Pay is finally rising – and for all the right reasons

Wages protest © Getty Images

Wages are rising, and not because of high inflation. Companies are volunteering to pay their staff more. That’s exactly the way economies are supposed to work, says Merryn Somerset Webb

Not getting paid enough? Blame your pension

David Cameron speaking at the British Chamber of Commerce © Getty images

It’s not that companies don’t want to pay their employees more, says Merryn Somerset Webb. They’re too busy plugging holes in their pension schemes.

Pension fund managers should clamp down on excessive executive pay – but they won't

Ron Mock © Getty images

Vested interests are keeping pension fund managers from acting in the best interests of their members, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Paying for bank accounts: how negative interest rates will cost you

Negative interest rates - bank branch © Getty Images

If you have any money in a bank account, negative interest rates mean you may have to get used to paying for the privilege, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

How deflation could push up the price of gold

Price of gold: Gold bars © Getty Iamges

Most people see gold as a hedge against inflation. But a bout of ‘proper’ deflation could push it up too, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Prison planet: how free movement of capital is a thing of the past

Check-in queue at Haneda Airport © Getty images

Japan has become the latest country to use a wealth tax to stop the capital of the rich from leaving, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Thinking of joining a private sector union? Now’s the time

Unioised and non-unionised wages

The balance between profits and wages is out of whack. But wages for workers in unions are growing faster than those not in unions.

BA: the central banker in the sky 

Avios - British Airways planes © Getty Images

The changes British Airways is making to its Avios rewards scheme will be very familiar indeed to the world’s central bankers, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Why we can't make the old spend enough to save the UK economy

US vehicle miles driven chart

The number of households headed by someone over 50 is growing. Merryn Somerset Webb explains why that’s especially bad news for Britain.

Germans need to wake up to the truth about who’s subsidising who in Europe

Europe: Angela Merkel and Matteo Renzi © Getty Images

German taxpayers like to think they are financing the lifestyles of their feckless southern cousins. But the truth is rather different, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

London house prices: how demand has created its own supply

Model of Battersea Power Station and luxury flats © Getty images

The supply of luxury properties in the capital has found its own ways of meeting demand, says Merryn Somerset Webb. That can only mean one thing for property prices.

Why we’re collecting less income tax – the rise of the black economy


The economy is improving, a but the amount of personal income tax raised isn’t rising. One reason is the sheer size of the black economy, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

China’s official growth figures are made up. Don’t believe them for a minute

China's central bank © Getty Images

Officially, the Chinese economy is still growing at over 7%. But there is no way that is true, says Merryn Somerset Webb. Here’s why.

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