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Duplex

The Weak Man Of Europe (germany)

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Is Germany now the sick man of Europe?

David Smith

Bob Bischof

27th May 1999

David Smith

Bob Bischof

How can I put this without sounding smug and offensive? The German economy, which most of us were brought up to admire, is failing. Britain's economy, about which the only discussion used to be the pace of its decline, is succeeding. This is not the temporary consequence of the economies being at different stages of the economic cycle. Something fundamental is wrong with Germany.

Regrettably(not), the remainder of this article is premium content. But the first paragraph says it all. Now nearly seven years on I can’t read that first paragraph without finding it smug, and offensive ?, well now I think pitiable is the correct adjective. The Germans have continued to invest in their manufacturing expertise, carving out a niche of excellence. They have a balance of trade surplus greater than China’s. Germany has had a healthy dose of house price deflation, helping to suppress inflationary pressures in their economy. They have maintained tight regulatory control of their rented sector, thus preventing the damaging impact of asset speculation.

So the monetarist simpletons have called it wrong again it seems. The easy answer of easy credit has failed miserably in the UK (and elsewhere). Instead of sustainable growth, we have malinvestment and bubbles, crippling debt and industrial decline.

Is this the last hurrah for the ruinous free money men? and if it is will we ever see house prices rise in such a frantic way again?

Glasshouses

Edited by Duplex

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Correct. There is no conception of what real wealth creation is amongst the upper echelons of British society. The commercial elite of this country appear to think that everybody else can do the work and they will do the speculation and the trading. The apotheosis of a life in England is to withdraw to your country estate (ie, abandon public life) rather than build a high-tech company. The tradition of wealth creation in the hard work of investing in real assets and getting real world-beating products to market is nowhere in sight in the model of English precedence. In fact, actually doing anything is still looked down upon.

I should know. I studied for an advanced business degree at a London institution. Manufacturing was universally held in contempt. Consulting and banking were the things to be in. At the heart of "British disease" is the infantile supposition that a nation can be rich through nothing more than arbitrage, speculation and trading goods from elsewhere. No doubt this relates to an Imperial Britain where in fact the real work was done by conquered peoples either at home or abroad.

This country cannot escape its fate as a hollowed-out industrial has-been hanging off, or smothered by, depending on how you look at it, the City.

I suspect the coming "energy gap" will force the complacency to face up to the realities of making a real living in the world.

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Well put Malco.

What did Napoleon say about the English. ‘A nation of shopkeepers’.

Maybe economic history has had an impact on investment behaviour in the UK. Trading rather than industry seems to have attracted the social elites, (still does) and the Industrial Revelation was a northern phenomena. I wonder if Britain would be a fundamentally different place; if Manchester had become the capital in the 19th centaury?

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Isn't it a bit like Man Utd buying Stockport county and having to spread its resources twice as thinly as it used to? Off course its finding it tough keeping near the top of the European League.

They are pouring millions into East Germany.

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Why rehash an article from 1999? What possible relevence does it have today?

I've been buying shares in Eon (German power company who own Powergen) over the last 5 years.

Excellent company, excellent future prospects.

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Guest Bart of Darkness
In fact, actually doing anything is still looked down upon.

This seems to be endemic throughout the UK.

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Why rehash an article from 1999? What possible relevence does it have today?

Why rehash.

When this sorry mess is all over, the reheated half arced panacea that will be offered up by ‘those who know’ will be the same easy money crapola that the British have tried and failed to implement as economic policy for nearly three decades.

Any other policy would run in opposition to sectional interests in the City. A City that kids itself (for instance) into believing that the Chinese will keep the boat afloat by buying insurance products etc from the UK when developing its own indigenous market would be cheaper, more efficient and strategically of greater worth. ‘The Chinese, develop their own financial services industry?’ impossible old fruit’

The degree of arrogant complacency is staggering, staggering.

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Duplex

The Chinese have decided how many foreign owned banks will be allowed into their market, it will be interesting to see how both of them do - no joke.

Free market - not in a million years. We have been spun and lied to.

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Duplex

The Chinese have decided how many foreign owned banks will be allowed into their market, it will be interesting to see how both of them do - no joke.

Free market - not in a million years. We have been spun and lied to.

Thats if they dont buy them first. :P

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  • 301 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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