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dgul

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Everything posted by dgul

  1. The trouble with the article is that they don't say - their statistics are awful (in that they're ill defined). They do say 'of household income' which suggests pre-tax, but they should make it explicit. Then you need to know if they're talking about median or mean income. But I think the main problem here is that the data is treated as a normal (or homogeneous) distribution. I'd have thought that the normal (old-fashioned) way for housing costs to perform is that you buy a house at 25 (large % of income) then spend 25 years paying it off (lower % of income as you get pay rises, along with principal being eroded by inflation), and then have 15 years at the end with house paid off (zero cost - they didn't included maintenance - or at least they didn't say they included maintenance - stupid amateur report). So - you could have 12.5 years at 100% of income, 12.5 years at 50% of income, 12.5 years (can't be bothered to do the sums for 15 years) at 0% of income - for this (made up reductio ad absurdum) is the average of 50% of income at all meaningful? And what is worse - there is a whole cohort of the working age population who have been bailed out by inflation and/or by crazy low interest rates (which new purchasers can't get). You've probably got a bimodal distribution here, with pre 2004 vs post 2004 (if not even more complicated). This would be relatively easy to resolve - just split out into age ranges of 30-40,40-50,50-60 - then you'd see the true cost of housing without the bailed out older owners. And even then they really should spell it out, otherwise you'd just get the standard response from boomers etc that you have to suffer when you're younger to get the benefits of ownership later - this isn't so true for buyers in the last 10 years. Oh, and you might as well split out owners from renters - entirely different situation.
  2. And it really is a tax - because houses are worth more, the government can extract that wealth through claims on the home for paying for care for the elderly, etc - the young are paying for the care of the elderly through this strange function. It would be fairer to have normal house prices (whatever that means) and for all taxpayers to pay for care etc.
  3. This is a loan, not a gift. There doesn't seem to really be any issues with getting finance for property. They should be concentrating on providing finance for normal companies, and particularly SMEs, for whom the banking system is currently failing.
  4. You can't blame him for the property market going crazy - what do you want him to do? Sell it for a million for the flipper to make the other 1/2 million? He bought a house for £220k in 1995 - quite expensive at that time, but not too high given his income. If you want to criticise him go for his politics, not incidental stuff.
  5. Funny guy Galloway. About 4/5ths of what he says is reasonable or at least makes you think about what you're being told by other people about the situation. Then he goes and spoils it all with some batshit crazy comment. Anyway, if he's talking about jailing bankers then I'd say it should be a bit more like 'Could the UK see a similar fate as Iceland?'...
  6. When you reach 40 your brain changes and you start considering Dunelm mIll as a suitable activity for a Sunday afternoon. Surely you covered this at school?
  7. [Oh, and might have saved my share of the pensions liability which the millionaire owners over the last 16 years have kindly handed over. ]
  8. It was probably running close to evens. Arguably, there might have been senior management decisions made which were made for the quick buck (for them), but even then, the model isn't great. However, without the debt it would have been easier to sell off the lot / do a fundamental rebrand, which, whilst not saving the company's traditional values, might have saved the 11,000 jobs.
  9. Great article from the time of the amazing Philip Green BHS turnaround: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2003/mar/04/supermarkets As it turns out, the amazing profits were largely made by generating £100m of 'negative goodwill' (=accounting speak for getting it out of the f**king sack at Christmas) - which allowed PG to take £1Bn in debt (yeah! the company is profitable!) and siphon it off to his wife, who, strangely enough, lives 'offshore'. Funny that the horrible debts held by BHS at administration point almost exactly equal the cash siphoned off at that point. More on the story: http://ftalphaville.ft.com/2016/04/25/2160082/would-11000-bhs-workers-still-have-jobs-if-tina-green-hadnt-siphoned-1bn-out-of-the-business/
  10. My local Barclay's is funny - loads of unused automatic tellers and a massive queue (mainly OAPs) for the single person in the lobby part of the branch (ostensibly for bureau de change but actually covers everything). I can't say I mind though - no queues for me...
  11. Forget that! See where Prior works - Webscoe industries! Superman III was 6 years before TBL came up with the term 'world wide web'! Paging the conspiracy guys...
  12. No - if you simply replaced the EU funding for subsidies with central UK funding then everything could carry on as before. It would be broadly cost neutral. Most farmers I know know that the money goes out from Westminster then comes back in from EU subsidies. The pro-exit ones are, however, assuming that the UK government would replace EU subsidy with central money...
  13. I'd say that most farmers I know are fairly productive, although they do put in quite a few hours for the money they get. Quite a few are morons - much of the work is just labour and morons can get by just fine. I'd probably agree that we'd be better off without the subsidies. I would argue, though, that this would need to be staged over 10+ years to allow food prices to rise to support the farmers without subsidy. You'd probably need to introduce import taxes on foodstuff imported from countries which do have farmer subsidies (eg, the EU). If you just remove the subsidies overnight then a really large proportion of farmers (particularly small farmers, 100-300 acres) would go bankrupt. Their farms would then be bought by rich financiers from London (and elsewhere) as a pad in the country exempt from CGT.
  14. We do suffer from some weird salary structures in the UK. This is largely a symptom of our seriously out of kilter economy.
  15. Just for the point of reference this is too high. Small farmers in the UK (say, about 150 acres pasture) will get about £15k in farm payments. Of course, they'll make money on their normal farming business on top of this. I'd happily accept that there is still an argument as to whether this is a good way to spend money... Now, there are some farms getting way way more than this - plenty have subsidy payments into the millions - they are the huge landowners. I'd happily accept that there should be a rolling off of the subsidy for larger farms, or even a ceiling.
  16. But they're not stupid. They know the EU is just sending money back that has just been sent over from the UK. However, their gamble on brexit is that the UK government would cut out the middle man - This is by no means guaranteed.
  17. Most farmers I've spoken to are pro exit. They see the money as being circular funding, and consider the EU as introducing draconian measures (like tagging or movement restrictions) that other countries don't bother implementing or policing. I've only spoken with livestock farmers, so I don't know the attitudes of arable.
  18. The problem is the staggering numbers involved. If you borrowed 12 month's salary on a bridging loan, on the presumption that you could sell your current place at 4x earnings, but it turns out it was 3x earnings, then you could probably survive. The other thing is bridging loans are short term money - if they had kept their current place and had had it valued as part of MEW to cover the purchase cost - again, not too silly (a bit silly, but not crazy). Or if they had a cast iron purchaser but the sale hadn't gone through yet - fine (ish). But these people have been playing a speculative game with big money - that really is crazy.
  19. There is more to it. 4. Did the company involved declare that all decisions were made in The Bahamas, and so was entitled to be 'based offshore', and thus pay taxes in that jurisdiction - or was it in fact run from other countries, with only a sham directorship claiming to make decisions in The Bahamas - in which case the company is guilty of tax evasion - and consequently all payments made (as dividends or in terms of company value when shares were sold) did not include the necessary taxes, despite the resultant personal income being declared for tax. Regarding this point, the documents appear to show that the company was, indeed, run from the UK, and attempts were made to obscure this fact. So this is evidence based and not speculation. And there is also: 5. While negotiating with the EU over the role of offshore companies and trusts several years ago, did DC declare to the electorate his personal interest in this field? Did he negotiate and vote in the best interests of the UK, or those of his family and extended peer group?
  20. Well - you can. Anyone can communicate with these folk to get offshore accounts set up. The problem is the expense - is it worthwhile paying the thousands required to offshore your money/income? Only if you're paid in the millions. They could clean this all up, but it appears that those in power over the last 20 years* have been up to their eyeballs in it. It really does need some kind of review. *well, no actual evidence that Blair was offshoring - but he is such a despicable character that I think he should be tarred with this particular brush.
  21. Well, I suppose. But: The MF offshore funds were undertaking activities which where illegal. It is DC's sheer hypocrisy about preaching the badness of tax avoidance while taking part in it himself. A bit like a person saying 'these slumland landlords are a stain on our lovely society and they have to go' while wallowing in the millions made by his property mogul dad who created an empire in rented housing unfit for human habitation whilst knowingly employing people to beat up those in arrears, and having sold his own slum properties several months before becoming PM only because he was advised it would look bad if it came out.
  22. It is all very well to say that he's paid up all the taxes due, but the fund during that time wasn't paying taxes in the UK. The evidence shows that the fund wasn't being run solely from the Bahamas, but was being managed from the UK. This makes it liable to pay taxes in the UK on its profits. He earned more from the fund dividend than he should have. Furthermore, the fund was worth more on sale than it should have been. Beyond this - I don't know why we should believe anything he's saying about his financial affairs - it has taken a week to squeeze this out of him. Who knows what else there is going on... And even beyond this - what about his dad? How big was his estate? How much of it was made from bogus offshore trusts - both being paid to run them, and how much did he make himself? How much money did DC inherit that he shouldn't have?
  23. That's lovely. Oh - by the way - the people benefiting from the offshore accounts will be the weapons dealers, the despots, the dictators. Probably for your aims it would be better if the offshore accounts were stopped, rather than you had the opportunity to remove yourself from the equation.
  24. How much margin does Argos make on their usual cheap lines? Receiving, storing and issuing is their main business - so they can do it efficiently. This is pure profit on top of their existing business model. I don't know how much it makes them, but it is surely easy money.
  25. 20% discount for bulk purchases. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-04-07/london-luxury-apartment-sales-slump-triggers-20-bulk-discounts
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