Tuesday, February 28, 2006 

BBC News: McDonald's to close 25 UK outlets Fast-food chain McDonald's is closing 25 branches in a bid to improve profits at its struggling UK operations. It is currently in talks with staff, but a spokeswoman said most of the closures would be older "high street" restaurants.
posted by Webmaster  @ 3:37 PM 0 comments

FT.com: Particular listings Rightmove, a property website that is about to float at a value of up to £400m, has come under attack from an unusual quarter - another website devoted to the downfall of the UK housing market.
posted by Webmaster  @ 3:03 PM 9 comments

Economicsuk.com: No boom in house prices The signals are mixed but Nationwide's report of a 0.2% drop in house prices in February and slghtly soft January mortgage approvals have reduced the likelihood of another sharp upward lurch in house-price inflation.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:46 PM 0 comments

Times: House price retreat casts doubt on recovery The cost of the average home fell for the first time in eight months in February, the country's largest building society reported today, casting further doubt on the sustainability of the recent recovery in house prices.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:44 PM 0 comments

Reuters: Irish house prices rose in January Irish house prices rose 10.2 percent year-on-year in January, up from 9.3 percent the previous month, with the average price for first time buyers crossing the 250,000 euro (170,000 pounds) barrier for the first time.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:42 PM 0 comments

Telegraph: Property sales packs 'will drive prices up' The introduction of compulsory home information packs (HIPs) could lead to a shortage of homes on the market and rising prices, experts have warned.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:41 PM 7 comments

BBC News: Powergen in big energy price rise Power company Powergen is putting up its gas prices by 24.4% and electricity prices by 18.4%. The price increases, from 10 March, will affect about six million customers in the UK.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:38 PM 0 comments

ThisisMoney: Doubts over spring homebuying spree BRITAIN'S biggest building society sent shudders through the estate agency industry today with a warning that the traditional spring rush of homebuyers could fail to materialise this year. Unveiling a slight fall in house prices during February, Nationwide cast doubt on whether the housing market's recent strength would be maintained over the next few months.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:46 AM 6 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | Telecoms firm to shed 3,000 jobs Telecoms group Cable & Wireless has said it expects to cut up to 3,000 jobs in the UK over the next five years.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:41 AM 0 comments

Reuters.co.uk: House prices fall in February House prices fell in February for the first time in eight months after a strong start to the year, a report said on Tuesday, suggesting a recent pick-up in the property market may not be sustained.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:39 AM 0 comments

Nationwide: Feb 2006 (PDF) Doubts cast on recent strength of the housing market.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:39 AM 11 comments

Sky News: First House Prices Fall In Months House prices fell in February for the first time in eight months after a strong start to the year, according to the Nationwide building society.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:38 AM 0 comments

Telegraph: Alliance & Leicester profits hit by unsecured bad debts Mortgage lender Alliance & Leicester saw profits fall in 2005 despite increasing its share of the mortgage market to 5.4pc. The bank was hit by consumers struggling to manage their debts. Customers failing to keep up with payments on unsecured loans rose to 5.1pc last year, although fewer borrowers fell behind on their mortgage repayments.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:35 AM 0 comments

Independent: MFI to axe 1,500 jobs The furniture group MFI today revealed plans to cut almost 1,500 jobs as part of a restructuring drive aimed at reviving its ailing fortunes. The group said it will reduce UK manufacturing by 40 per cent and close at least 11 stores, as well as shut three home delivery centres and its sofa workshop business.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:33 AM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | Persimmon shrugs off housing dip The UK's largest housebuilder, Persimmon, has reported a rise in profits despite a "challenging" 2005. The firm added that trading since the start of the year had been good, and it was anticipating a steady rise in house prices this year as demand picked up.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:31 AM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | Nationwide sees house prices dip UK house prices fell by 0.2% in February, the latest survey from the Nationwide building society has found.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:10 AM 0 comments

Monday, February 27, 2006 

This is Money: Homes shortage boosts prices A shortage of homes has made it a seller's market with prices rising for the third month a row according to figures released today. Property website Hometrack said house prices in England and Wales rose by an average of 0.4% thanks to a surge in the number of people looking to move.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:55 PM 0 comments

The Times: House price recovery continues Mortgage lending remained strong in January amid further evidence that a shortage of homes for sale continues to support house prices.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:53 PM 17 comments

Guardian: Strong property performance stems rate cut hopes House prices in England and Wales rose by 0.4% in February as a surge of new buyers entered the market, according to the latest Hometrack housing index.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:52 PM 0 comments

BBC News: Indian growth story to continue A surging industrial sector, modest inflation and rising investment will help India's economy grow 8.1% in the year to March 2006, a report has said.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:50 PM 0 comments

BBC News: Japan ponders post-deflation plan Rising consumer prices mean Japan's central bank is almost certain to begin tightening its monetary policy in April, a survey of analysts has found.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:49 PM 0 comments

post.ie: Revenue in crackdown on rogue landlords Landlords are facing a fresh crackdown on undeclared income under new rules forcing health boards and local authorities to automatically inform the Revenue Commissioners of all rent payments made on behalf of tenants.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:50 AM 2 comments

Sunday, February 26, 2006 

Times: Merryn On Money - The coming liquidity crisis Ask any fund manager what liquid is the most important to the global economy and he'll tell you oil. The tight supply- and-demand situation has pushed prices up to a level that threatens economic growth and is kicking off inflation around the world, he will say.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:17 PM 0 comments

Scotsman.com: Mortgage kit claims to save £2,250 A new mortgage kit has come on to the market, which claims to be able to help homeowners to shave about £2,250 off the cost of taking out a £95,000 loan on a £100,000 property.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:12 PM 0 comments

Times: Glimmer of hope for savers Happy days are here again for the millions of long-suffering people saving in insurance company with-profits funds for their pensions or to repay their mortgages.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:11 PM 0 comments

FirstRung: The week in focus 22/02/06 - 25/02/06 So you're an average kind of person, doing an average kind of job, looking for somewhere half decent to live.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:11 PM 0 comments

This is Money: Council tax snoopers could sell your data The Government is considering selling off detailed information about people's homes gathered by council tax inspectors.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:09 PM 0 comments

Independent: Card firms get tough on interest rates Hit by the cost of bad debt write-offs and the "rate tarts" who flit from one interest-free deal to the next without ever hanging around to repay the overtures of their suitors, a growing number of credit card lenders are curbing the 0 per cent deals.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:08 PM 0 comments

Guardian: Singing along with Mervyn You have to hand it to the Bank of England: the Old Lady just cannot keep out of the news.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:07 PM 0 comments

Sunday Herald: Fall in investment down to pensions and energy bills Business investment in the UK may have fallen back because companies' boards are pausing to look at how they should deal with increasing shortfalls in their pension funds, according to a member of the Monetary Policy Committee.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:07 PM 0 comments

Observer: Long-term savers lose out on interest rates Savers who have held their money in the same account for some time should look at moving their cash as the rates on offer are often much lower than those on new accounts from the same bank or building society.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:06 PM 0 comments

Saturday, February 25, 2006 

Guardian: First-time buyers beware If you thought the buy-to-let bubble had burst, think again. It's about to blow bigger than ever. Banks and building societies, thankful that the feared house price crash never materialised, are now queueing up to throw money at the new landlord class.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:37 PM 19 comments

Sunday Times (AUS): Record spree on credit cards Australians went on a spending binge in December, racking up a record amount on their debit and credit cards, and pushing the year's total to about $170 billion.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:36 PM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | UK | 'Houses boost' for inheritance Britons collectively could reap £360bn over the next 15 years from properties left in wills, a report suggests.
posted by Webmaster  @ 7:39 PM 3 comments

Telegraph: Buy-to-fret Long-distance lettings seemed like a lucrative no-brainer to budding property magnate Peter Grantley. And then came the cowboy builders, dodgy agents, rampant thieves, disappearing tenants, fly tippers and wrecking balls.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:16 PM 2 comments

Independent: Wealth Check - 'We want to buy a place of our own' Jack Cunningham, 28, lives with his girlfriend Livvie in Highbury, North London. Currently renting, their aim is to buy a property in the area, aware that the price of a suitable flat would be in the region of £250,000.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:21 AM 2 comments

Independent: Thrifty Living - Should money be treated like a bath, or a running tap? Musing on the words of the Duchess of Windsor, is it possible to have too much money? And how should you treat it? Like a bath, or a running tap? Is your overdraft limit a limit, or is it, ahem, a monthly target?
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:20 AM 0 comments

This is Money: The catch in a 10-year stretch Homebuyers are snapping up longer-term fixed rate mortgages - but are they jumping for the rates on offer without considering the downsides of these deals?
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:20 AM 2 comments

The Times: What the credit card adverts missed out The cost of feckless credit card use was illustrated this week when Barclaycard announced that it had to write off £1.1 billion in bad debts last year.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:17 AM 0 comments

Friday, February 24, 2006 

Guardian: Household spending rises by 0.7% Consumer spending quickened at the end of last year, official figures showed today, apparently bolstering the Bank of England's case for keeping interest rates unchanged.
posted by Webmaster  @ 3:59 PM 0 comments

This is Money: Mortgage of the future In 1996, John Major was Prime Minister, Charles and Diana divorced and a young David Beckham burst into the limelight with a 50-yard wonder goal for Manchester United.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:24 AM 0 comments

Telegraph: Global credit ocean dries up The cash machine that sustained a world boom is about to close, and it's going to get ugly, says Ambrose Evans-Pritchard.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:22 AM 17 comments

Scotsman: Business investment slide hints at 'unbalanced' UK economy There was a sharp decline in business investment in the last quarter of 2005, bringing investment growth for the full year to just 1.6 per cent.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:18 AM 0 comments

BBC News: In Debt? No Worries Brits are a nation of borrowers who do not care how much they owe, says a new report. Nearly half of adults are currently in debt, owing money on a variety of credit cards and loans, according to market analyst Mintel.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:16 AM 0 comments

SKY News: Bank Joins Debt Warning Profits at Lloyds TSB climbed 4% to almost £3.5bn, up from £3.3bn on last year. The rise was helped by a 20% increase in wholesale and international banking profits.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:15 AM 0 comments

BBC News: Unpaid overtime falls again in UK The number of people in the UK who work unpaid overtime has fallen for the fourth year in a row. According to the TUC, 4.76 million workers did unpaid overtime last year - a 6% fall since 2001.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:14 AM 0 comments

Thursday, February 23, 2006 

BBC News: Japan in surprise trade deficit Japan has posted its first monthly trade deficit in five years, and its biggest in 23 years. The trade balance fell to a 348.9bn yen ($2.95bn; £1.7bn) deficit in January against surpluses of 911.9bn yen in December and 193.9bn yen a year before.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:08 AM 0 comments

BBC News: US fuel drives up consumer prices US consumer prices rose by 0.7% in January, fuelled by a sharp rise in energy costs. However, Department of Labor figures showed that when food and energy costs were excluded prices rose by just 0.2%.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:22 AM 0 comments

PR Web.com: Goodbye Mr. Greenspan, Hello Higher Interest Rates On Greenspans' Last Day the Fed Raises Interest Rates Again Greenspan gives the Real Estate Market one final shot by raising short term interest rates for the 14th straight increase since June 2004.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:20 AM 0 comments

Guardian: Fear of property boom kept interest rate on hold Fears that lower interest rates would stoke a fresh boom in the property market helped keep borrowing costs on hold at 4.5% this month, the Bank of England revealed yesterday.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:18 AM 1 comments

The Mirror: Why are all our bill's going up? The real reasons we're being fleeced this winter.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:16 AM 2 comments

Wednesday, February 22, 2006 

icCheshire: Wimpey reveals sales dip Housebuilder George Wimpey counted the cost of last year's weaker housing market to reveal a 16% fall in full-year profits yesterday.
posted by Webmaster  @ 3:45 PM 1 comments

Telegraph: 'The Government is about to con the consumer' Estate agents claim the introduction of sellers' packs next year will devastate the housing market. Other groups say they will improve property buying, reports Teresa Hunter.
posted by Webmaster  @ 3:44 PM 4 comments

First Rung: Why the buy-to-let bubble is doomed to burst Amateur landlords are the new tech investors. What on earth do I mean by that? Let me explain...
posted by Webmaster  @ 3:42 PM 16 comments

BBC News: US Fed leaves base rate door open The US Federal Reserve's interest rate rise last month has brought borrowing costs close to where they need to be, policymakers believe.
posted by Webmaster  @ 12:31 PM 0 comments

BBC News: Bank voted 8-1 to freeze UK rates Prospects of an early cut in UK interest rates appear to have receded after the minutes of latest Bank of England meeting were published.
posted by Webmaster  @ 12:30 PM 3 comments

Economics UK: 9-1 Vote at the bank The Bank of England's monetary policy committee voted 8-1 to keep interest rates unchanged with Steve Nickell as the only dissenter, as in December and January.
posted by Webmaster  @ 12:26 PM 0 comments

Tuesday, February 21, 2006 

BBC NEWS | Business | Asda to take on 7,000 staff in UK Supermarket group Asda is to take on 7,000 staff across the UK this year, owner Wal-Mart has said.
posted by Webmaster  @ 6:26 PM 21 comments

The Times: The house that just won't sell After months of speculation The Sunday Times can reveal that Nether Lypiatt Manor, the country home of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent, has had £500,000 lopped off its asking price. Now - almost - anybody with £5.5m to spare can live like royalty.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:41 PM 3 comments

Guardian: Water bill rises on the way Consumers already facing rises in energy and council tax bills were dealt a further blow today with the news that water bills are to go up in April.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:40 PM 0 comments

EU Reporter: Trichet Warnings Set Interest rates to Rise Speaking in the occasion of the monetary dialogue with the Parliament at the European Parliament's Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, the President of the ECB Jean-Claude Trichet showed confidence about economic performance in Europe, but nevertheless pointed out some disquietude about upward pressure in inflation and expressed some concerns on real estate market prices, leaving room for further interest rates increases.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:39 PM 3 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | Europe 'to grow faster in 2006' Europe-wide economic growth will accelerate this year, the European Commission has forecast. It predicts that growth across the whole 25 European Union member states will hit 2.2% in 2006, and by 1.9% across the 12 nations with the euro.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:37 PM 0 comments

The Times: Oil revenues gush in to give Brown a record surplus A tax bonanza from the soaring value of North Sea oil fuelled bumper revenues from British companies for Gordon Brown last month, helping him to register a record monthly surplus on the public finances.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:35 PM 0 comments

The Times: Bad debts hit profits at Barclays Barclays posted a 15 per cent rise in group full-year profits to a record £5.28 billion before tax - the best in its history - but soaring bad debts among Barclaycard users saw profits at its credit card division slide by almost one-fifth.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:33 PM 0 comments

This is Leicestershire: Debts are a luxary we can't afford So there it was, a front-page lead on a national broadsheet (right next to a picture of some footballer who, despite his millions, still can't get his life together - poor chap), the news that personal insolvencies are (again) at record levels.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:31 PM 0 comments

The Motley Fool: Mortgage Protection - Don't Get Fleeced! When you took out a mortgage, did your lender try and persuade you to take out Mortgage Payment Protection Insurance (MPPI)? And did you fall for it?
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:29 PM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | England | West Midlands | Help! My student rent is soaring Aston University student Ambrish Patel wrote to the BBC News website about his struggle to pay his rent.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:28 PM 0 comments

Monday, February 20, 2006 

BBC News: Record budget surplus lifts Brown A strong surge in corporate and income tax receipts helped the government to post a record monthly budget surplus in January, official figures have shown.
posted by Webmaster  @ 12:38 PM 1 comments

BBC News: Nigeria attacks raise oil prices Oil prices have risen by more than $1 a barrel on Monday, after fresh violence cut production in Nigeria, the world's eighth largest exporter.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:32 AM 13 comments

This is Money: Are you ready for a mortgage? Most homeowners would be reluctant to lock themselves into a mortgage deal for five years, let alone ten. But with long-term fixed rates looking almost as attractive as two and three-year rates, the option to fix for a decade has never been so attractive.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:31 AM 0 comments

This is Money: January mortgages hit all-time high Claims the property market is enjoying a mini-boom have been backed by the highest January mortgage lending figure on record. Figures released today by the Council of Mortgage Lenders have shown £23bn was borrowed in January - almost a third more than the same month last year.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:30 AM 5 comments

Independent: If house price rises were made of straw, would spending fall through the floor? There was a sudden jolt last week to the "steady as she goes" perception of the UK economy.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:28 AM 1 comments

Guardian: Housing market offers variety of investment bets A property portfolio made up entirely of buy-to-let properties may not seem so appealing now that yields are flattening and capital appreciation has slowed, but there are alternative ways to make money from the housing market.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:23 AM 1 comments

Guardian: Pity central bankers - keep the economy growing or hold back a new property boom? While the Bank of England's quarterly inflation report press conferences are usually dominated by the comments of the governor, Mervyn King, there was, on last week's occasion, a particularly noteworthy statement from the Bank's executive director, Paul Tucker.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:20 AM 0 comments

Reuters: Bank's Barker says MPC sees faster growth The Bank of England expects economic growth to pick up and has been encouraged by recent activity in the consumer sector, Monetary Policy Committee Member Kate Barker was quoted as saying.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:15 AM 0 comments

Daily Mail: Average house price is £200,000 While the average cost of a house has soared above £200,000, the average household income has not grown at an equivalent rate.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:13 AM 0 comments

EconomicsUK: Strong public finances = no tax hikes It looks as though Gordon Brown has got away with it. The public finances for January, just released, were healthy.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:11 AM 0 comments

BBC News: House prices move above £200,000 The average asking price of a home in England and Wales has broken through the £200,000 barrier due to renewed demand from buyers, a report has said.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:06 AM 8 comments

BBC NEWS - Workers 'turning to second jobs': One in four workers in the UK has a second job to help pay off debts or keep up with the everyday cost of living, according to a survey.
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 8:01 AM 0 comments

Sunday, February 19, 2006 

The Sunday Mail: Bankruptcies warning (OZ) AUSTRALIA'S credit card debt has reached a record $34 billion, prompting fears of an explosion of bankruptcies
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 11:07 PM 0 comments

The Sunday Business Post Online: George Soros: "The financier has joined the pessimists of the world economy by warning that the Federal Reserve could trigger a collapse in house prices. AUS recession could loom next year if the Fed were to raise interest rates too quickly, said Soros. A US recession could overspill into a foreign exchange crisis and global instability as the value of the dollar drops. Commentators have pointed to the surging price of gold as evidence that investors are increasingly worried that the Soros "
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 11:05 PM 1 comments

Herald Sun: Mortgage time bombs (Oz) They say homeowners who have borrowed with little or no deposit may have negative equity and are vulnerable to interest-rate movements.
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 10:37 PM 0 comments

Times Online: Ireland - Why office blocks are sexy As investors lose interest in the residential buy-to-let market, commercial property has become an attractive proposition.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:12 PM 0 comments

Saturday, February 18, 2006 

Investment & Business News: House prices: was talk of January pick up a myth? We take a less bullish view of the housing market than others. Whereas many predict a continuation of a soft landing, we say that thanks to unprecedented levels of low inflation, we are in unknown territory, but that the market will be vulnerable to crash for many years, and that some, as yet unforeseen crisis, (but lets face it crises are a fact of economic life, and they are always unforeseen) could immediately lead to an implosion in house prices.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:58 PM 4 comments

Independent: Charges take the shine off cut-price mortgages Mortgage rates have fallen below 4 per cent for the first time in three years. Three lenders have reduced their rates in order to offer deals priced at 3.99 per cent, even though the Bank of England's base rate has remained at 4.5 per cent since last August.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:45 PM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | Scotland | Housing value 'continues to rise' he value of Scotland's private housing stock has increased by 138% to more than £190bn over the last decade, according to a study.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:41 PM 0 comments

The Business Online: City believes US interest rates will hit 5% City of London economists believe US interest rates will hit 5% by May as economic growth accelerated in the first quarter, according to a fresh poll this weekend.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:41 PM 0 comments

Scotsman.com: Buy-to-let market on a high Buy-to-let lending has soared to record levels, with the value of loans in the sector in the second half of last year hitting almost £15 billion.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:39 PM 4 comments

Cards that take longer than mortgages Credit card users could finish paying off their mortgage before their card balance if they only clear the minimum payment each month.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:39 PM 1 comments

The Sunday Mail (AUS): Bankruptcies warning Australia's redit card debt has reached a record $34 billion, prompting fears of an explosion of bankruptcies. Reserve Bank figures show the average credit card account is $2732 in debt.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:37 PM 0 comments

Sunday Times (AUS): Bank warns on interest rates The Reserve Bank of Australia has warned that the next move in interest rates is likely to be up, and cautioned households against running up high debts.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:36 PM 0 comments

Firstrung: Fixed-rate loans back in popularity New figures have revealed that the number of Britons choosing to take out a fixed-rate mortgage grew to a record level during the last three months of 2005.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:56 PM 0 comments

Money Week: Why the UK housing market is still primed for a crash What's one of the first things you do when you move into a house you've just bought? We're not talking about paying the lawyer's fees, or stamp duty, or any of the annoying administration like moving furniture or getting the phone connected. What's the first thing you do to the house?
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:54 PM 0 comments

Money Week: A "desperately poor year" for housing The property-market bulls seem to think that 2005 has gone their way. Listen to Fionnuala Earley, Nationwide's chief economist. She told The Independent last week that the bears have been "eating humble pie" lately: instead of crashing, she says the housing market has shown "resilience" and "stability" in 2005, with annual house-price growth (through November) coming in at 2.4%.
posted by DavidG  @ 12:22 AM 13 comments

Friday, February 17, 2006 

FT.com: The man and the bubble: "The Yale professor correctly predicted the last stock market crash five years ago in his book, Irrational Exuberance. Now he is predicting a property meltdown."
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 11:57 PM 0 comments

BBC News: British Gas raises prices by 22% Millions of British Gas customers are facing higher bills after the firm raised its gas and electricity prices. The UK's biggest energy supplier will raise gas and electricity tariffs by 22% from 1 March 2006.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:09 PM 7 comments

BBC News: US housing starts at 30-year high The US has recorded the fastest pace in construction of new houses for more than 30 years, official figures show.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:37 AM 0 comments

Guardian: Shock fall in store takings belies Bank optimism Worst performance since second world war. Growth at risk as shopping boom runs out of steam.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:18 AM 6 comments

Reuters: Retail sales drop seen ushering in lower rates Retail sales fell at their sharpest rate in over a year in January, official data showed on Thursday, raising expectations that the Bank of England will cut interest rates in coming months to shore up spending.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:16 AM 11 comments

Reuters: Reuters poll on house prices Reuters has surveyed more than 20 economists for their views on house price inflation, whether current house prices are overvalued and the possibility of a housing market crash.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:15 AM 3 comments

Motor Trader: Avis announces job cuts Car rental firm Avis Europe has announced plans to axe around 200 jobs from its workforce over the next 18 months. The firm is struggling to stave off fierce competition from its rivals and will attempt to cut costs by restructuring its business.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:13 AM 0 comments

The Move Channel: Five-year low in declining first-time buyers Property sales figures for first-time buyer are the lowest for five years, said the National Association of Estate Agents in a revised report today. First-time buyers’ share of the housing market fell to an average of 12.2% per month in 2005, the lowest figure to be recorded by the NAEA housing market survey since it began.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:12 AM 3 comments

BBC News: Japanese economy picks up speed Japan's economy grew at a faster pace than expected in the final three months of 2005, boosted by a pick-up in exports, official figures show.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:11 AM 4 comments

This is Money: London tops debt table London has topped a table of the most indebted cities in the UK , with the east end and Uxbridge unveiled as the worst hit areas.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:27 AM 0 comments

Thursday, February 16, 2006 

Reuters: Housing market not on brink of renewed boom House prices are overvalued and the recent upturn in housing market activity will likely run out of steam towards the end of the year, a Reuters poll of economists shows...The recent housing market rebound has also made a cut less likely given the risk that lower rates could fuel another housing market boom.
posted by DavidG  @ 10:11 PM 2 comments

Money Week: Why the outlook is bleak for commercial property I mention the British obsession with property so often in this column you could be forgiven for thinking I'm obsessed with everyone else's obsession. And in a way it's true.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:32 PM 1 comments

BBC News: Date for Brown's Budget announced Chancellor Gordon Brown will deliver his Budget on 22 March, the government has announced. Mr Brown will update MPs on his latest forecasts for the UK economy.
posted by Webmaster  @ 12:39 PM 0 comments

Guardian: Weaker housing market hits B&Q sales The DIY chain B&Q today reported a further deterioration in sales at the start of the year as a softer housing market took its toll.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:19 AM 0 comments

Reuters: Buy-to-let - the price ain't right Buy-to-let valuations on new properties face increasing scrutiny and investors could soon find it more difficult to arrange a loan. However, a well informed adviser can make all the difference.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:16 AM 0 comments

Motley Fool: House Prices To Rise In 2006 & 2007 According to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), a trade association which represents 98% of residential mortgage lending, house prices are set to rise 2% in 2006 and 2007.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:15 AM 3 comments

icNorthWales: Sharp growth in house hunting There has been a sharp rise in interest in UK property, according to the latest propertyfinder.com research. The number of people searching for property on the site hit 1.1m in January, up 54% compared to the same period in 2005, when the property market was languishing in the doldrums.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:14 AM 8 comments

National Statistics - January 2006 In the three months to January the seasonally adjusted index for retail sales at constant 2000 prices was 1.3 per cent higher than the previous three months.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:12 AM 1 comments

BBC News: Fed's Bernanke sees price risks US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke has reiterated that inflation remains a risk to the economy, meaning interest rates may need to keep rising.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:11 AM 0 comments

BBC News: Retail sales suffer January fall A fall in UK retail sales during January has put the brakes on growth in the sector, official figures show.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:10 AM 1 comments

Wednesday, February 15, 2006 

Residential Landlord: Tax fraud brings jail and £3m fine A Lichfield landlord has been jailed for two years at Stafford Crown Court after being convicted of a major tax fraud. He was also ordered to pay £3.36m in a confiscation order for income tax including interest due, together with costs of £25,000 awarded to HM Revenue & Customs.
posted by DavidG  @ 11:18 PM 0 comments

Residential Landlord: Landlord jailed for immigration breach A Lancashire landlord who provided housing for 25 illegal immigrants has been jailed for 12 months.
posted by DavidG  @ 10:54 PM 0 comments

Reuters: Pay growth picks up Annual pay growth unexpectedly picked up in the final quarter of 2005, fuelled by financial sector bonuses...the internationally-recognised ILO measure of unemployment rose further to 5.1 percent, its highest since April 2003, as the number of unemployed climbed by 108,000 in the fourth quarter.
posted by DavidG  @ 10:51 PM 0 comments

This Is Money: Blow to spring rate cut hopes HOPES of a spring cut in interest rates were dealt a severe blow today as the Bank of England signalled it is in no hurry to move borrowing costs in either direction.
posted by DavidG  @ 10:44 PM 0 comments

FT: Top Bank official calls for action on gilts Paul Tucker, head of markets at the Bank of England, on Wednesday urged the government to alleviate problems caused to pension funds and the wider economy by artificially low yields on long-dated bonds.
posted by DavidG  @ 10:41 PM 0 comments

SKY News: BoE Calm Over Inflation Inflation is likely to stick close to its 2% target over the next two years, the Bank of England is predicting. The comments in its quarterly Inflation Report indicate the BoE is not in a hurry to to move interest rates in either direction.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:57 PM 1 comments

SKY News: Jobless Total Falls The number of people out of work and claiming unemployment benefit fell by 2,000 last month to 904,200. That was down for the first time in a year.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:55 PM 1 comments

Business World: Bank of England raises CPI measure The Bank of England today tweaked its forecasts to show a slightly higher profile for inflation in the coming twelve months -- a move that may well dampen expectations of lower borrowing costs in the next few months.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:40 PM 0 comments

BBC News: UK unemployment at four-year high The number of people out of work in the UK has risen to a four-year high, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:33 AM 0 comments

Reuters: Pay growth picks up Annual pay growth unexpectedly picked up in the final quarter of 2005, fuelled by financial sector bonuses, while jobless claims fell in January for the first time in a year, official data showed on Wednesday.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:31 AM 0 comments

SKY News: Right Move For Property The country's biggest property Web site, Rightmove, is planning a stock market listing in March. An industry source says the flotation could raise around £300m. The offer will consist of the sale of shares by Rightmove's existing shareholders.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:29 AM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | Europe | Bird flu spreading across Europe Two swans found dead in northern Germany have the virulent H5N1 bird flu virus, officials say, marking the first such cases in the country.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:55 AM 0 comments

This is the North East: How house prices are wrecking family life House prices are on the increase again. For some strange reason, this makes the experts cheer. Why? Maybe the experts don't have small children.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:53 AM 12 comments

icWales: Britons fall short on interest rates knowledge Four out of 10 Britons don't know what interest rate they are earning on their savings accounts, while a third don't know how much they are being charged to borrow money on a credit card.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:51 AM 0 comments

Telegraph: Demand soars for two-year fixed-rate mortgages Demand for two-year fixed-rate mortgages has rocketed in the past month, according to Hamptons International's latest mortgage survey.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:50 AM 0 comments

Reuters.co.uk: Bernanke to play the hawk on Capitol Hill Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke will seek to establish his anti-inflation credentials when he delivers the U.S. central bank's semi-annual report to Congress on Wednesday after just two weeks on the job.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:49 AM 0 comments

Reuters.co.uk: Housing market revival puts BoE in rate dilemma A resurgent property market underpinned by expectations interest rates may soon fall and an unexpected drop in inflation below target has landed the Bank of England in a serious dilemma.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:49 AM 5 comments

The Motley Fool UK: What To Do With £500 Coming into money is always exciting. Whether it's a bonus from work, an inheritance, a Premium Bond win or maybe even a tax rebate, deciding what to do with it always takes some consideration.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:48 AM 0 comments

Telegraph: Get into a fix with your mortgage With long-term swap rates lower than short-term rates, mortgage lenders can afford to be very competitive with 10-year fixes. Teresa Hunter looks at what is on offer.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:47 AM 0 comments

The Scotsman: UK set for strong mortgage revival UK mortgages are set for a strong recovery, with a leading analyst forecasting a near 13 per cent lift in advances during the next five years. Gross advances in the UK residential market will grow 12.89 per cent to £324 billion in 2010 from £287bn last year, according to independent analyst Datamonitor.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:45 AM 0 comments

Telegraph: In 1997 household debt stood at £500bn...now it's £1,158bn Gordon Brown is now spending most of his time out of the Treasury, laying the ground for his ascension to the top spot.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:44 AM 0 comments

Tuesday, February 14, 2006 

FT.com: Wealth - From fruit to IT, deflation is the issue Every media pundit, economist and investment analyst has been whining about inflation and it's starting to bother me.
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 11:46 PM 1 comments

RTE Business: US retail sales show surprise 2.3% jump US consumers boosted retail sales by 2.3% in January, the government said today in a big surprise to analysts expecting an increase of just 0.9%. Overall, retail sales were the strongest since May 2004.
posted by Webmaster  @ 3:44 PM 0 comments

Times: Cheap homes sell before a brick is laid First-time buyers queue all day to secure properties on land that does not have planning permission. Hundreds of first-time homebuyers queued for up to eight hours to secure a property on an affordable housing development before a brick has been laid.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:44 AM 14 comments

FirstRung.com: Hoping for an interest rate cut? We have some bad news... Harsh economic reality has dealt another blow to those hoping for interest rate cuts in the UK later this year. Manufacturers upped their prices by more than expected in January as soaring input costs forced them to charge more for goods.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:43 AM 0 comments

BBC News: Deadline day for UK card shoppers After 14 February some retailers may refuse to accept payment from people using chip and pin cards if they do not know their pin number.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:42 AM 0 comments

BBC News: UK inflation level steady at 1.9% UK inflation remained unchanged at 1.9% in January, despite rising fuel costs and soaring household energy bills. The CPI figure is inside the Bank of England's 2% target. December's CPI was also revised downward by the Office for National Statistics, from 2% to 1.9%.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:41 AM 5 comments

SKY News: Inflation Takes A Trip Inflation came in at a surprising 1.9% in January, the first undershoot of the 2% target since May 2005. New data from the Office For National Statistics showed consumer prices fell 0.5% in January, keeping the figure the same as December.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:39 AM 1 comments

Reuters: Inflation below target in January The inflation rate stood below its 2.0 percent target in both January and December, the first undershoot since May 2005, the Office for National Statistics said on Tuesday.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:37 AM 0 comments

UKIP: Real cost of taxes now more than half UK GDP Britain's high tax burden under Chancellor Gordon Brown is costing the UK economy an extra £138bn ($247bn/euros 200bn) a year in lost wealth by crushing incentives to work, trade and invest.
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:36 AM 0 comments

Monday, February 13, 2006 

SKY News: Home Prices Feel Chill House prices dipped O.1% lower during December with certain types of property falling out of favour. The fall was driven by a 1% drop in the average price of a bungalow and a 0.9% decline in the cost of semi-detached homes, according to the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:43 PM 2 comments

BBC News: UK house price growth picking up House price inflation across the UK picked up pace in the year to December, according to a report from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM).
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:10 PM 14 comments

Telegraph: Blueprint for disaster In the drive to provide thousands of new homes, the building giants have been handed unprecedented power and influence. How wise is that?
posted by Webmaster  @ 12:55 PM 0 comments

ODPM: House Price Index December 2005 The mix-adjusted average house price in the UK in December 2005 stood at £185,788, down marginally from £185,848 in November 2005 (not seasonally adjusted).
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:25 AM 2 comments

BBC News: China retail sales 'to rise 11%' Chinese retail spending is expected to grow by more than 11% per year to reach 10 trillion yuan ($1.2 trillion; £680bn) in 2010, Beijing predicts.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:23 AM 0 comments

SKY News: Workspace Favours London Small-business landlord Workspace says it saw a 18.6% rise in net asset value per share as it increased its property focus on London.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:20 AM 0 comments

Reuters: House price inflation picks up modestly House price inflation picked up to 2.9 percent in the year to December 2005, from 2.2 percent in November, the government said on Monday -- further evidence of a gradual recovery in the property market.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:18 AM 3 comments

Bank of England: Target Two Point Zero - The Bank of England/Times Interest Rate Challenge Some of the keenest economics and business studies students are in the final days of preparation for the area finals of the Bank of England/Times Interest Rate Challenge.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:17 AM 0 comments

icWales: Inflation key to cut cost of borrowing Economic news will dominate the corporate agenda this week, although the performance of the retail sector will come into view again with the release of fourth quarter trading figures from B&Q owner Kingfisher.
posted by Webmaster  @ 11:16 AM 0 comments

smh.com.au: Sydney house prices slip five per cent House prices in Sydney fell five per cent last year, bridging the gap between the value of real estate in Sydney and the other capital cities.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:22 AM 0 comments

Telegraph: Consumer debt level beats UK output Debts taken on by British families have overtaken the size of the economy for the first time. People have borrowed so much their total debt outstripped Britain's gross domestic product over the new year.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:13 AM 1 comments

Sunday, February 12, 2006 

BBC NEWS | Business | Some shops lacking chip and pin Around one in 10 of the UK's tills will not have been switched to chip and pin by the deadline on Tuesday night, the group behind the programme has said.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:05 PM 0 comments

the Daily Mail: JobCentre staff threaten strike The Government's biggest department is threatened with fresh strike action by thousands of workers in JobCentres and benefit offices in a bitter dispute over job cuts.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:06 PM 1 comments

The Observer: Rates must fall soon, so take out a tracker Interest rates might not have fallen last week, but Cash is reliably informed that four out of nine members of the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee voted in favour of a cut.
posted by Webmaster  @ 4:50 PM 10 comments

Scotsman.com: Homebuyers cash in A mortgage price war has broken out south of the Border, but Scottish institutions have been slow to respond to the cutthroat competition for home loan business.
posted by Webmaster  @ 4:49 PM 1 comments

This is Money: End in sight for the rate tarts The glory days when 'rate tarts' could switch their borrowing between credit cards for free could be coming to an end. Card companies are tightening up their balance transfer deals. Many of the zero% offers now come with a fee.
posted by Webmaster  @ 4:49 PM 2 comments

Thisismoney: Economy hit by double whammy RISING unemployment and a moribund High Street are expected to be highlighted this week. January figures for employment, retail sales and inflation are likely to provide a sombre start to the year, with higher petrol prices pushing up the cost of living as jobs are being lost and consumer demand seems to be weakening.
posted by Johnny  @ 3:29 PM 1 comments

Saturday, February 11, 2006 

Telegraph: High street discount chains fail The worsening conditions on the high street have claimed their largest victim this year, with the owner of the QS and BWise discount shops collapsing into administration, putting 4,500 jobs under threat. A further 400 jobs were put at risk as JL French Automotive Castings, the British unit of a Canadian-owned auto-parts firm, filed for bankruptcy. The company is based at Witham, Essex.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:47 PM 1 comments

Leeds Today: Estate Agent warns on pricing: "A senior Yorkshire estate agent has warned buyers to beware of basing their price expectations on so-called 'average' UK prices."
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 8:27 AM 8 comments

Friday, February 10, 2006 

The Daily Reckoning: Sucker's rally in house prices "If house price inflation really does gather momentum and picks up again to double figures by the summer," warns Brian Durrant, "then the chances of an eventual house price fall become much greater. We need instead a period of further house price stagnation to work off these stretched valuations. Today's newspaper headlines represent the beginnings of a classic sucker's rally..."
posted by DavidG  @ 11:56 PM 0 comments

My Finances: Graduates can't buy a house without mum and dad The bank of mum and dad has come to the aid of more than half a million graduates in the last five years, to help them buy a home.
posted by DavidG  @ 11:50 PM 0 comments

First Rung: What first-time homebuyers really want "A cut would have put a spring back in the step of homebuyers this February as the market struggles to shake off the winter freeze, but instead it faces the possibility of returning to the Doldrums as the new year 'rush' wears off." We thought we'd deliver you that quote in full so you could revel in the sound of a property pundit losing all grip on a logical argument.
posted by DavidG  @ 11:30 PM 0 comments

First Rung: Psssssfffffft. That's the sound of the air finally leaking from the real estate bubble in Loudoun County... The final word should be given to the insurance agent Joe Kelly over lunch downtown at the Leesburg Restaurant. When questioned regarding the severe downturn in consumer confidence in real estate, his reply,"They ran out of stupid people."
posted by DavidG  @ 11:28 PM 0 comments

First Rung: Guess who`s back, back again.... Estate Agents are crying foul at the return of that lesser spotted beast, the Gazunderer. Surely they should have no worry? If various reports are to be believed the property market is bouncing back, (as reported by all major media including the highly credible BBC this week)
posted by DavidG  @ 11:20 PM 2 comments

This Is Money: Builders' showhome tricks Today, a report reveals the tricks of the trade used to convince buyers their newly built home will be bigger and better than it really is, such as...
posted by DavidG  @ 11:09 PM 1 comments

FT: Fixed-rate loans ease burden for homeowners While interest rates have gone up by 1 percentage point since 2003, the rise in average mortgage costs was only half this amount... so the Bank of England may need to set higher interest rates than in the past to keep inflation under control.
posted by DavidG  @ 10:54 PM 0 comments

Residential Landlord: 'Crunch time' for landlords With introduction of licensing for larger houses in multiple occupation now less than two months away, 2006 is a 'crunch' time for landlords and agents, delegates at the Association of Residential Letting Agents annual conference have been told... Penalties for breach of the law s are severe, with fines of up to £20,000 for failure to get a licence or for breaching permitted numbers, delegates were warned. Other consequences can that no rent will be payable by the occupants, and repossession becomes impossible.
posted by DavidG  @ 10:52 PM 0 comments

Investment & Business News: House prices: was talk of January pick up a myth? We take a less bullish view of the housing market than others. Whereas many predict a continuation of a soft landing, we say that thanks to unprecedented levels of low inflation, we are in unknown territory, but that the market will be vulnerable to crash for many years, and that some, as yet unforeseen crisis, (but lets face it crises are a fact of economic life, and they are always unforeseen) could immediately lead to an implosion in house prices.
posted by DavidG  @ 10:26 PM 5 comments

Investment & Business News: House Prices: is the market safe? The soft landing brigade reckon they have won the argument. House prices did not crash in 2005, and November and December appeared to indicate a significant improvement...There are flaws in these optimistic arguments, however...
posted by DavidG  @ 10:23 PM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | US trade gap hits record in 2005 The US trade deficit widened in December, pushing the shortfall for 2005 to record levels.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:58 PM 0 comments

Builder Online(USA) - Experts Predict Housing Prices Will Drop Housing prices are projected to drop 5 percent during each of the first two quarters of this year, and Bay State residents remain highly concerned over the cost of housing, market analysts said yesterday.
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 9:06 PM 1 comments

smh.com.au: Rush for new loans challenges the boom Sydney's home borrowers have ignored the growing mortgage default problem and helped push new lending to a near-record.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:16 PM 0 comments

BBC News: Volkswagen to cut 20,000 workers German carmaker Volkswagen is to cut up to 20,000 jobs as part of restructuring plans that are set to run until 2009. The company is expected to make the cuts at its core Volkswagen business. Its shares jumped 8% to 54.79 euros.
posted by Webmaster  @ 4:39 PM 0 comments

FT.com: FT index shows muted house price recovery The recovery of house prices since the Autumn has been extremely muted and did not gather pace at the start of 2006, the FT House price index, the most reliable guide to prices paid in the property market, showed on Friday.
posted by Johnny  @ 12:48 PM 5 comments

This is Money: Weak economy could keep UK rates low Us interest rates are set to exceed those in Britain for the first time in over half a decade, underlining the weakening fortunes of the UK economy.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:50 AM 4 comments

Guardian: Estate agents criticise buyers' tactics Gazundering looks set to become a bigger problem than gazumping, as homebuyers look to beat down the price they pay for properties, the organisation representing estate agents warned today.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:49 AM 11 comments

Garrington Home Finders: Gaining Momentum The timing of house price cycles through the various sectors of the market is always led by the market in prime central London.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:48 AM 0 comments

ThisisMoney: House prices slip in January House prices slipped in January for the first time since May last year, according to an influential property market study. The Halifax house price index found prices fell 0.4% during the month, adding that the UK is still in the midst of a 'slow market'. The average price of a property now stands at £170,833.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:25 AM 3 comments

Independent: Consumer boom produces record UK global trade deficit The UK notched up a record global goods trade deficit last year, casting fresh doubt on the Bank of England's forecast for a turnaround in exports. Britain imported £65.5bn more goods than she exported, which was equivalent of 5.4 per cent of GDP - making it the worst deficit in real terms since 1974, the Office for National Statistics said yesterday.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:21 AM 2 comments

TimesOnline:UK plunges into the red on annual crude trade The demise of Britain's self-sufficiency in oil loomed larger yesterday as it emerged that the country plunged into the red on trade in crude in 2005 for the first full year since the late Seventies. After becoming a net importer of crude for most of the second half of last year, Britain recorded its first annual deficit on trade in oil since Margaret Thatcher came to power in 1979.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:17 AM 0 comments

Thursday, February 09, 2006 

BBC News: Bank leaves rates on hold again UK interest rates have been left on hold again at 4.5% following the Bank of England's two-day meeting, despite signs of slowing High Street sales.
posted by Webmaster  @ 12:08 PM 13 comments

BBC News: UK goods trade deficit increases The UK's goods trade deficit with the rest of the world widened unexpectedly in December, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
posted by Webmaster  @ 12:06 PM 0 comments

Telegraph: Factory output at worst for a decade Britain's industrial sector has shrunk to its smallest size for over a decade after a miserable 2005, figures showed yesterday. The manufacturing and mining sector's output was lower in the final quarter of last year than at any time since early 1995, figures from the Office for National Statistics showed.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:43 AM 0 comments

Guardian: More jobs to go at Abbey Abbey National yesterday warned that up to 2,000 jobs are to be shed this year, on top of the 4,000 which have gone since the takeover by Banco Santander 15 months ago. News of the planned job cuts came as Abbey announced it had turned pre-tax losses of £21m in 2004 into profits of £596m in 2005.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:40 AM 0 comments

Guardian: Interest rates to be held again with cut predicted for May No change likely for sixth month running. Housing market rebound poses puzzle for MPC.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:40 AM 0 comments

NZ Herald: US interest rates could hit 5 per cent Strong data and past experience with incoming Federal Reserve chairmen has convinced investors the US central bank will lift interest rates to 5 per cent by July, but that bet looks premature.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:39 AM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | UK base rates set to stay on hold UK interest rates are set to remain at 4.5% following the Bank of England's latest rate-setting meeting despite signs of slowing High Street sales.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:38 AM 1 comments

Guardian: Should I consider equity release? I have been told I can raise money using an equity release scheme but don't understand what's involved, except that the extra money comes from my house.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:37 AM 2 comments

Sky News: Figures Show Mortgages Ray of Light Rising wages and static house prices have caused a fall in the proportion of their pay which people spend on their mortgages each month, figures show.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:36 AM 0 comments

The Herald Letters: Extravagant and useless way to tackle debt Your report on the Scottish Executive's Debt Arrangement Scheme is worrying (How it cost £2m to deal with £1m debt - February 7). A busy money advice centre can assist around 3000 debtors a year for £150,000.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:36 AM 0 comments

This is Money: £1,000 to arrange a mortgage Homebuyers are facing mortgage arrangement fees running to £1,000 or more as lenders become increasingly desperate to recoup the cost of cheap loans.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:35 AM 0 comments

This is Money: Don't be caught short by Barclays Customers who pay off their outstanding balance each month are about as unpopular with credit card companies as so-called rate tarts who switch from one provider to another in pursuit of 0% offers.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:34 AM 0 comments

Wednesday, February 08, 2006 

Guardian Unlimited Money - Estate agents criticise buyers' tactics Gazundering looks set to become a bigger problem than gazumping, as homebuyers look to beat down the price they pay for properties, the organisation representing estate agents warned today.
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 6:23 PM 6 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | House prices 'fell in late 2005' House prices in England and Wales fell by 2% in the last three months of 2005, according to authoritative figures from the Land Registry.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:57 AM 15 comments

IFAonline: House prices up 4.6% says Land Registry The Land Registry's latest residential property price report shows average house prices in England and Wales rose 4.6% during the period October - December 2005.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:56 AM 2 comments

Independent: Mortgage Penalties - Save now, but you will pay later Even with today's relatively low interest rates, the prospect of a mortgage costing less than 2 per cent seems closer to fantasy than reality. But such loans do exist. The catch is that homebuyers who want to save now have to be willing to pay more later.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:45 AM 0 comments

Telegraph: Standard drops another payout bombshell The writing has been on the wall for more than two million Standard Life policyholders for some time.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:44 AM 0 comments

Demographia: 2nd Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey - 2006 (PDF) Ratings for All Major Urban Markets Australia, Canada, Republic of Ireland, New Zealand, United Kingdom, United States.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:37 AM 1 comments

smh.com.au: Slump hits home As house prices soared, many property owners and the Government made a killing. Now those who missed out then face a double whammy.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:33 AM 2 comments

Reuters: Bank set to leave interest rates on hold Interest rates look set to stay at 4.5 percent this week amid growing signs that both the housing market and consumer spending are on the mend. All 45 analysts polled by Reuters last week predicted the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee would leave rates unchanged for the sixth month running after a quarter-point cut in August.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:15 AM 3 comments

Tuesday, February 07, 2006 

Norwich Evening News: House price boom traps young buyers Soaring house prices in Norwich are stopping first-time buyers from getting on to the property ladder, while hundreds of those who do are getting their homes repossessed because they cannot afford the mortgage repayments.
posted by Webmaster  @ 3:06 PM 8 comments

Building Societies Association: House prices in 2006 A year ago, many analysts saw the housing market heading for a crash after a decade of strong house price inflation. At the BSA annual lecture in October 2004, Roger Bootle of Capital Economics outlined why he believed house prices would fall by 20% over the subsequent few years. Many other commentators also predicted significant declines in house prices.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:51 PM 2 comments

SKY News: Land Rover Confirms Cuts Land Rover has unveiled details of a voluntary redundancy programme. The details came as the company confirmed plans to axe 1,300 jobs at its main UK plant.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:49 PM 0 comments

economicsuk.com: Weak retail sales, or just a welcome rebalancing? The British Retail Consortium duly reported that retail sales in January were weak. This is a summary of their findings...
posted by Webmaster  @ 10:46 AM 0 comments

FT.Com: Survey fuels fears of UK consumer slowdown Fears that Britain might be facing a fresh consumer slowdown will be stoked up on Tuesday by a retail survey showing the weakest high street sales for more than a decade. High street sales last month were the weakest in 11 years according to a survey published by the British Retail Consortium. Analysts have blamed rising household costs - especially fuel bills - and taxes for the damping down of consumer spending - a trend highlighted towards the end of last year by Mervyn King, the Bank of England governor.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:14 AM 4 comments

Telegraph: Scrooge returns to haunt retailers Retailers have had their worst New Year for more than a decade, according to figures today that reignite fears for the high street and the wider economy. High street sales rose by just 0.2pc in the 12 months to the end of January, the British Retail Consortium said. The like-for-like figures are the worst since the survey began in 1995, and dash hopes that retailers have bounced back following one of the worst years on record.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:11 AM 0 comments

Guardian: Call for rate cut as sales burst peters out Retailers today call on the Bank of England to cut interest rates this week after the latest snapshot of consumer activity showed the burst of spending in the new year sales petered out by the end of January. With the Bank's nine-strong monetary policy committee due to begin a two-day meeting tomorrow, the British Retail Consortium said the underlying trend in sales was flat and the business climate challenging.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:09 AM 0 comments

TimesOnline: Treasury adviser calls for property tax A leading economic adviser with links to the Treasury today called on the Government to introduce a wealth tax on property which could cost average householders £2,000 a year, after his organisation warned that house prices in the UK are overvalued by as much as 20 per cent.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:05 AM 2 comments

TimesOnline: Fresh call for delay to start of real estate trusts in Britain THE chief executive of Capital & Regional yesterday called on the Treasury to delay the launch of real estate investment trusts (Reits) in the UK, amid growing fears the new vehicles will fail without a radical revision of their proposed structure.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:04 AM 0 comments

Monday, February 06, 2006 

BBC NEWS: Optimism in housing market soars Confidence in the Scottish housing market is booming, according to a new economic study
posted by Buffer Bear  @ 11:08 PM 0 comments

Herald: Beware wobbly wheel on house price bandwagon Homeowners who hope to rely on a continuing surge in property prices to underpin remortgaging and the release of equity from their homes may find the bandwagon running out of steam this year.
posted by Buffer Bear  @ 11:04 PM 0 comments

BBC News: Iran nuclear fears fuel oil price Oil prices have risen sharply on news that Iran will no longer allow snap inspection of its nuclear sites.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:47 PM 0 comments

SKY News: Millions afraid to change More than half of Britons admit their finances are in poor shape, but only a third have plans to improve them this year, a survey has shown.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:58 AM 0 comments

BBC News: Gas prices 'set to rise further' Reports that British Gas is to increase its prices by up to 25% have angered consumer groups and some charities. British Gas said it is planning to increase rates but said the exact figure had not yet been decided.
posted by Webmaster  @ 9:56 AM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | Scotland | Economy 'set to slow' over 2006 Scotland's economy is expected to slow down over the next year, analysts have predicted.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:56 AM 0 comments

This is Money: Work 35 days to pay off debt interest It takes consumers the first 35 days of the year to earn enough money to pay for the interest on credit cards and personal loans.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:55 AM 0 comments

Guardian: The risky way to get it Together First-time buyers are snapping up a loan offering six times income, but should they take the chance? Rupert Jones reports :- A controversial mortgage that allows you to borrow as much as 125% of a property's value, plus up to almost six times your income, is raking in first-time buyers desperate to get a first step on the ladder.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:31 AM 37 comments

Sunday, February 05, 2006 

NEWS.com.au: House prices on rise Signs are emerging that property prices have begun increasing again after a year of stagnant growth in several capital cities.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:31 PM 0 comments

Scotsman: Fears grow of looming mortgage black hole A MORTGAGE black hole of more than £1bn is facing hundreds of thousands of Britain's home buyers, because they have used endowment compensation cheques to fund luxury holidays, kitchen extensions or buy other consumer durables.
posted by Johnny  @ 5:44 PM 0 comments

Guardian: 19-year-olds among record numbers filing for bankruptcy Cases up 45% last year and 100,000 expected in 2006, Home repossessions at highest since early 1990s :- Record numbers of consumers - some as young as 19 - gave up the struggle last year to pay off debts amassed as a result of credit-driven spending sprees and filed for bankruptcy or voluntary insolvency, the government said yesterday.
posted by Johnny  @ 4:35 PM 3 comments

ThisisMoney:1,500 BA jobs go in Heathrow shake-up BRITISH Airways is expected to axe more than 1,500 jobs when the airline moves to its new home in the giant Terminal 5 building at Heathrow airport in 2008, senior sources at the company have told Financial Mail.
posted by Johnny  @ 3:57 PM 0 comments

ThisisMoney: 25% gas bill hikes on the way GAS and electricity bills are to leap by 25% - thought to be their biggest single increase ever. The Mail on Sunday can reveal that British Gas, the nation's largest domestic power supplier, will announce the price hike this month in letters to its 11 million consumers.
posted by Johnny  @ 3:56 PM 6 comments

Saturday, February 04, 2006 

FT.com - Investors warned to avoid property Investors should steer clear of buying UK properties for the next few years, the head of real estate at HSBC Private Bank has warned.
posted by Bullish Bear  @ 8:21 PM 8 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | US jobs growth less than forecast The US economy generated 193,000 new jobs in January, fewer than economists had been expecting for the month.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:35 PM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | First-time buyers 'may overpay' More than one in five first-time buyers are willing to offer above the asking price to get a foot on the property ladder, a survey has suggested.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:33 PM 5 comments

Scotsman.com: Confidence in Scots housing market soars Almost three-quarters of Scots expect house prices to rise in the coming year, it emerged today. However, council tax rises have become an issue for many first-time buyers, according to the latest Clydesdale Bank Housebuyers survey.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:31 PM 0 comments

Creditman: Rise in mortgage payment difficulties, but numbers still low The number of properties taken into possession by mortgage lenders rose to 5,630 in the second half of 2005, according to figures released today by the Council of Mortgage Lenders.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:29 PM 0 comments

Independent: Boom and Bust Britain, 2006 Boom: city bonuses hit a record £7.5bn; 3,000 workers given at least £1m; sales of penthouses, fast cars and champagne at all-time high. Bust: house repossessions up 70% to highest level since the 1991 crash; mortgage arrears up 21%; record 70,000 go bankrupt, a 51% rise
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:27 PM 1 comments

Independent: Firms remain upbeat despite slowdown in services sector Growth in Britain's dominant services sector slowed last month although firms were more optimistic about the outlook for the coming year, a report showed yesterday.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:26 PM 0 comments

Telegraph: Drive to cut benefit claimants 'fatally flawed' Tony Blair's drive to cut the number of incapacity benefit claimants was condemned as "fatally flawed" yesterday after it emerged that there were only about 170 full-time doctors to examine hundreds of thousands of new claimants each year.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:26 PM 0 comments

Guardian: Our economy is a house of credit cards Since 2000, there have been 240,000 personal insolvencies in England and Wales. Put another way, since the millennium, more than one household in every 100 has been directly affected by the consequences of excessive debt.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:25 PM 0 comments

Daily Mail: Pushed over the edge Banks and financial companies are tightening the screws on customers, causing a dramatic surge in bankruptcies and home repossessions.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:24 PM 0 comments

Mirror.co.uk: Record 67,580 go bankrupt The £1TRILLION debt mountain claimed a record number of victims last year. Around 67,580 people became insolvent, the highest ever and beating the peak in the 90s slump, the Insolvency Service said yesterday.
posted by Webmaster  @ 5:23 PM 0 comments

Friday, February 03, 2006 

BBC News: Bankruptcies show sharp increase Nearly 70,000 people became insolvent in 2005, the highest since records began, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has said.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:40 PM 14 comments

BBC News: US jobs growth less than forecast The US economy generated 193,000 new jobs in January, fewer than economists had been expecting for the month.
posted by Webmaster  @ 2:37 PM 0 comments

The Guardian: Millionaires without the price of a loaf Zimbabweans, already facing inflation of more than 580%, yesterday began using a new Z$50,000 note - only to discover that it was not quite enough to buy a loaf of bread.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:37 AM 4 comments

This is Money: Bankruptcies set to soar The Government is set to unveil a record level of bankruptcies today as thousands of people choose to go bust rather than face spiralling debts.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:35 AM 6 comments

Reuters.co.uk: Lenders partly to blame for soaring debt The number of personal bankruptcies has soared so much that irresponsible lending practices have to be partly to blame, an insolvency expert said on Thursday.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:34 AM 0 comments

smh.com.au: Huge rise in repossession The number of properties repossessed by banks was higher last year than after the recession of the early 1990s, as a growing number of overstretched investors were burned by Sydney's house-price slump.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:28 AM 0 comments

ThisisMoney: The paperclip property ladder IT sounds like a daft story from a Hollywood movie, but a thrifty writer is on the way to proving he can buy a house with a paperclip. Canadian Kyle MacDonald set off on a quest last summer to turn one red paper clip into a house, by swapping it for items that were bigger or better.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:19 AM 2 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | 'One third' of homes face 40% tax One in three UK homeowners will now be subject to a 40% inheritance tax, research suggests. The survey by Scottish Widows bank claims 8.2m people - 34% of homeowners - have assets worth more than the £275,000 threshold for the tax.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:14 AM 12 comments

Thursday, February 02, 2006 

BBC News: Harrods shutting pension scheme Famous London department store Harrods is notifying its staff about closing its final salary pension plan to new and existing employees.
posted by Webmaster  @ 4:47 PM 0 comments

BBC News: ECB keeps interest rates steady The European Central Bank (ECB) has, as expected, left its key interest rate unchanged at 2.25%. Investors are now eagerly awaiting ECB president Jean-Claude Trichet's latest thoughts about future rate policy.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:06 PM 0 comments

Find a Property: HIPS Will Hit Market, Says CML The introduction of Home Information Packs (HIPS) will throw a large spanner into the housing market works, says the CML...
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:36 AM 2 comments

IFAonline: Position of property websites clarified by OFT Property websites that have a sole relationship with an estate agent have been reclassified as estate agents under guidance published by the Office of Fair Trade (OFT)
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:35 AM 0 comments

RTE Business: No rate changes expected from ECB today The European Central Bank is likely to opt to hold its key interest rates steady at its regular monthly policy-setting meeting later today, but might prepare the markets for an increase in March.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:34 AM 0 comments

What Mortgage: First-time buyers think the time is right Half of prospective homeowners feel that if they don't get on the property ladder soon, they never will, but low salaries and debts are holding them back.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:34 AM 6 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | Record US outlay on construction The US housing boom, fuelled by low mortgage rates, led to record spending on construction last year.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:33 AM 0 comments

The Herald: Newspapers warn of job cuts The downturn in advertising markets could result in about 65 redundancies at The Herald and its sister publications.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:32 AM 0 comments

icWales: Substantial rise in insolvencies in Wales The number of insolvent companies in Wales increased by more than 30% in the fourth quarter of 2005 compared with the same period in 2004, according to figures released yesterday by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:32 AM 0 comments

The Herald: 70 jobs to go at Samuel Walker Samuel Walker & Sons, the crane hire business set up in 1964 by its eponymous founder, has gone into liquidation with the loss of nearly 70 jobs.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:31 AM 0 comments

This is Money: The credit card interest riddle A consumer watchdog has urged credit card companies to adopt a single standard measure of calculating interest rates.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:30 AM 0 comments

Firstrung.com: Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) continue to receive a cautious response On a recent straw poll at a conference held by PricewaterhouseCoopers only 11% of attendees said that their companies were likely to convert to a REIT next year.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:26 AM 0 comments

Firstrung.com: UK property is good value - if you have money to burn Firstly, let's not get too carried away with the Nationwide figures. Hometrack's January survey, released on Monday, showed a tiny 0.1% monthly gain in house prices, and suggests that prices are still down 1% year-on-year.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:25 AM 0 comments

Credit Action: February Debt statistics At the end of December 2005 the total UK personal debt was £1,158bn. The growth rate remains strong at 10.2% for the previous 12 months which equates to an increase of £100bn.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:24 AM 0 comments

Wednesday, February 01, 2006 

SKY News: Consumer Spending Slips Consumers' unsecured borrowing rose by its smallest amount in five years in December but mortgage lending accelerated more than expected to a 18-month high. Consumer credit rose by £834m in December, below the average forecast for a £1.1bn rise.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:05 PM 0 comments

SKY News: Sales Hit Tool Maker A historic tool and garden equipment manufacturer employing 980 staff has called in the administrators. Eliza Tinsley, dating back more than 150 years, has been hit by the drop off in High Street spending and the rapid rise in the cost of raw materials such as steel.
posted by Webmaster  @ 1:03 PM 0 comments

BBC News: Greenspan signs up to UK Treasury Former US central bank chief Alan Greenspan has agreed to become an honorary adviser to the UK Treasury. The announcement by Chancellor Gordon Brown comes less than seven hours after Mr Greenspan's near 19-year tenure as Federal Reserve chairman ended.
posted by Webmaster  @ 12:33 PM 3 comments

World Economic Forum: When the Bubble Bursts Never before have housing prices risen by so much for so long in so many places, said Pamela D. Woodall, Economics Editor, The Economist, United Kingdom.
posted by Webmaster  @ 8:43 AM 0 comments

Telegraph: House price jump fails to boost consumer spending House prices shot up by 1.4pc in January, the biggest jump in 18 months, a survey from the Nationwide building society has found but economists say a rebound in the housing market is not feeding through to the rest of the UK economy.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:11 AM 1 comments

Independent: House prices rise but lending slows The consumer economy began the new year firing on most of its cylinders, according to figures yesterday showing a rise in house prices, mortgage approvals and optimism. The price of the average home and the number of mortgage approvals, which point to future price rises, both posted the largest increase for 18 months.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:10 AM 0 comments

Guardian: Housing packs could lead to return of gazumping, say mortgage lenders The introduction next year of home information packs could distort the housing market, cause confusion among the public and even lead to the return of gazumping, according to the body representing banks and building societies.
posted by Johnny  @ 8:08 AM 0 comments

BBC NEWS | Business | Fed ups US interest rate to 4.5% The Federal Reserve has raised interest rates for the 14th time in a row, following the last meeting for retiring chairman Alan Greenspan.
posted by Webmaster  @ 7:48 AM 1 comments

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