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Everything posted by LeeT

  1. That's something I thought about. Is that figure for closures the net figure (ie clubs closing - clubs opening)? Anecdotally, the club I worked in for 9 years closed last month and several of the pubs I've worked in are now shut. There have been loads of closures locally in the past few years, but a few new smaller clubs opening. I reckon the churn time to be a little over a year between closure and a new mug taking over in those places that do reopen. Re names. We had a Bar Me (asking for trouble). I'd like to open a Seal Club.
  2. The possibility of withdrawal of NSI Index Linked Certificates was flagged up on Money Box on Radio 4 the other day. I'm surprised to see it so soon though. I can't help thinking whoever it was on Radio 4 who mentioned it had some inside information. At least I managed to get some cash into these, but should have topped up a little more. Maybe the sponsor a mortgage holder programme could be part of Cameron's Big Society initiative, anybody with savings and no mortgage is a philanthropist now..
  3. Very sweet, it'd need wheel clamps to deter thieves from towing it away round here. Anyway, it's much nicer than one of these.
  4. They did think it through, a little bit anyway. The idea seems to be that the treadmills generate electricity which can then be sold on to the National Grid. These are not electronically assisted treadmills.
  5. As somebody mentioned, the Rowntree Foundation need to talk up poverty or they're out of business. I think if the survey polled just the poorest 25% of the population a much more reasonable income level below which one cannot buy the real essentials would be arrived at. Many people seem to have an inflated sense of entitlement to a standard of living they have bought on credit in recent years and are now accustomed to. if I can get my income up to £14400, I'll count myself extraordinarily well off. If you're struggling on that level of income you need to find a cheaper place to rent or quit that coke habit. Current annual spend is around $4250. Sharing our hovel splits a cheap rent and bills 3 ways, cheap end of day food, free working holidays etc.
  6. The Domesday Book page I tried seemed to be under construction for Shropshire so I wasn't able to see appreciation on a 1000 year timescale. There's this piece on it 's sale at here and Google map view if you want to have a nosey round the pad.
  7. That's pretty much how I remember the system working when I claimed benefits. Council tax benefit works in a similar way. A person is deemed to be able to pay 20% of their net income above JSA rate and disregard towards council tax. If you live in a high rent and council tax area you could easily find that working extra hours returns a marginal rate of 10.5% of gross. That is, for every £1 extra earned, 30p goes in income tax and NI, leaving 70p net pay. 85% of this 70p then goes to pay rent and council tax. That leaves 10.5p (15% of 70p) in your pocket out of £1 earned. Personal allowances mean the first work above JSA rates, yields 15% marginal gain after paying 65% towards rent and 20% towards council tax to somebody considering starting work. So entering the workforce for minimum or low wages or taking on more hours often yields somewhere between an extra 10.5 and 15% of gross wages over benefits receivable. That can easily be spent on bus fares and laundering work clothes. I think increases in personal allowances and minimum wages combined with reducing LHA rates may be enough to make job seeking worthwhile in cheaper parts of the country. I don't see it helping much in large parts of the southern England though given the absurdly high rents to start with.
  8. I'll join you. I think the economy will tank. Oh, not that sort of think tank?
  9. Re the pretty diagram I posted on pg34 of this thread, Forum member has started a thread linking to http://www.wheredoesmymoneygo.org which shows the same data in a much more interactive manner. Click on the launch dashboard to see data.
  10. Where does the Government spend our money? from Guardian.
  11. Analysis: Economistocracy A new Office for Budget Responsibility will advise on the way politicians tackle our budget deficit. Frances Cairncross investigates how the deficit could change politics. Reducing the budget deficit is seen as the key challenge facing the new government. But alongside the politicians there will be a new body charged with advising on the process. An independent Office for Budget Responsibility is being created, to make its own forecasts of growth and borrowing ready for the emergency budget expected in June. This new institution may sound obscure, but it could have big implications. It aims to bring key information on which government economic policy is based much more into the open, and free it from political spin. The man who will head it, Sir Alan Budd, has said he wants to use his influence to "keep the Chancellor's feet to the fire" in ensuring that the deficit is tackled. The aim is also to make budgets take more account of long term priorities, and future generations, rather than focus only on short term political demands. So will the deficit crisis mean politicians lose some of their historic power over spending and taxing? Is there public demand for watchdogs like this to "keep the politicians honest" - or is it a threat to democracy? And how does the British plan compare with other countries' attempts to police government spending? The programme is presented by Frances Cairncross, and interviewees include Rachel Lomax, former top civil servant and Deputy Governor of the Bank of England.
  12. This is interesting reading. A typically bearish view from Market Oracle looking at gold/silver ratio in the context of a general poor outlook for equities and a weak Euro. Basically invest in tin, turn it into foil hats, wear two for added protection. duck and cover, pray that the sky doesn't fall along with everything else.
  13. 'This particular one has the benefit of a good size bedroom .....Bedroom 1 9' 9" x 7' ( 2.97m x 2.13m )' So what does a small bedroom measure up like?
  14. Wow, thanks for the swift and comprehensive reply. I've no perl experience and won't be availing myself of your service, but thanks anyway. I tend to check prices a few times per day, more if they are volatile or near targets. I'm aware of the effect of BV commission rates. To hit lower commissions I'd need more trades as my account is considerably smaller than yours. That in part lies behind me asking about narrowing the range and trading more frequently. I'm toying with the idea of adding to my account instead. I have looked over historical comparisons of gold silver ratios and noted that ratio moves but not subjected it to detailed analysis. This article and this one may prove insightful for others too.
  15. I've swapped my gold for silver, but timed it badly, silver price dropped $4 just after I bought taking ratio to 70.4. It's since returned to my buy price. Peakoil - Have you ran historical data to arrive at 63.1 and 69 ratios? Do you know it to be more profitable than trading tighter ratios more frequently?
  16. Deleted because I was drifting slightly off topic from housing benefit and onto child benefits and family tax credits instead. Sorry folks.
  17. I've just stumbled upon this link in ZeroHedge. In the Newsnight video (see post 1 for link) Sachs asks "How long has this Greek question been on the table. About 10 weeks maybe?" This is a Jan 2009 video in which Hendry points out the possibility of a Euro collapse.
  18. How about not renewing the special liquidity scheme (SLS) and the mortgage guarantee scheme (MGS). Raising capital gains tax (CGT) to 40%. Increasing loan to value (LTV) ratio to 25% and making earnings multiples 2.5* couple or 3.25 single earnings. Investigate every self certified mortgage and instigate fraud prosecutions against all who inflated their earnings. Increase funding to local council housing departments dealing with the private rented sector to check all private landlords comply with regulations. Allow revenue and customs to access land registry and electoral roll data to seek out landlords not declaring rental income. Enforce full council tax on empty properties. Force councils to make compulsory purchase orders at 50% of market value on properties that have been empty for more than 12 months. Limit local housing allowance (LHA) to those on benefits to 66% median rent for type of property. Allow the Bank of England (BoE) to target 4 or 5% RPI rather than 2% CPI. Relax planning restrictions and build 300,000 pa for 10 years. Introduce protected rents on long term tenancies. OK, maybe implementing all of that might be overkill, but you catch the drift.
  19. You want WOOD? Not checked since I read about it a few months ago but I think it's mostly N American forestry and timber companies. More info. iShares page
  20. I've not thought this through but couldn't we get in some Goldman Sachs genius to come up with some wheeze? Maybe we could set up some PFI agency and pay them to pay back the defecit (and national debt). There must be some way to move it off balance sheet. Problem solved and we're debt free.
  21. I like your thinking but can't be bothered to sign up and vote for your suggestions. How about Debian (girl) or Mandrake or Berkeley (boy)?
  22. This is an interesting site where you can find LHA (Local Housing Allowance) rates nationwide. lha-direct I'm paying £112.50pcm rent in a shared house, there's no way I can afford some of the places housing benefit claimants live in. They can even afford to live alone in flats and 1 bed houses where the added (non shared) cost of gas and electricity is largely offset by having council tax paid for them. I can't afford to buy as some buy to let spiv can always outbid me knowing that the council will more than cover an inflated purchase price in housing benefit. The system sucks. Is this a workable system to be put into Grant Schapps suggestion box? Rather than base LHA on median rent for type of accommodation, it should be something like the x th percentile price, where x is the percentage of people on benefits. So, in an area where 15% of residencies are occupied by those on housing benefit, maximum LHA is set so that 85% of properties are too expensive for the full rent to be paid as housing benefit. This will force tenants to find cheaper properties and landlords to reduce rents or sell up. I guess this would have to apply at expiration of current tenancy agreements as otherwise tenants would still be liable to pay rents for which they are not in receipt of sufficient benefit to cover. Edited to add. Isn't LHA based on median asking prices, not median let prices? So landlords asking £500pcm, when they'd happily accept £400 can have the effect of driving up rents.
  23. It's ISA money, not initially intended for short term trading, but I thought I'd spotted an opportunity when most other funds were tanking. Ideally I'd like to make fewer trades in a less volatile environment within the ISA. I maybe should look at alternative methods, So far I'm doing OK, but not brilliantly. I think today may have converted me to holding with the trend for a longer time frame though. At the moment spread is on LUK2 is 0.345% (Sell £124.22, buy £124.65) which is about what I'd normally expect. I think things just got badly out of hand with volatility today. Bought at 12.39pm for £128.11, price on todays chart looks to be £124 at that time. I'm not feeling too bad about it, I'm still up by a few rounds of beer.
  24. This is how I should be feeling. WILLIE DIXON - SITTIN' AND CRYIN' THE BLUES Today started nicely trading FTSE ETF's. Closed yesterdays long and took 2 shorts nearly perfectly. Then it crumbled. I took a long which should have been fine, but for me not noticing my broker had dumped a massive 4% spread on it. I held on for longer than I should have trying to make up some losses and the market turned violently against me. Then it just got stupid volatile with 15 point swings every minute and my charting software crashed. I exited badly bloodied and wiped out everything I'd gained since the election. Now I'm back to where I was under Labour. Still, lessons learned and all that. There's always tomorrow.
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