When will the Tories do something about house prices?

Anyone who doubts that the fiscal response to the pandemic has stoked inflation needs to look at the latest figures from the Nationwide on the housing market. Yet again they confirm that the deepest recession in modern history has been accompanied by a boom in house prices. Moreover, the inflation does not seem to have been reined-in by the ending of the stamp duty holiday. The price of the average home, according to the building society, rose by a further 0.9 per cent in November to reach £252,687. This is ten per cent up on last November and 15 per cent up on March 2020, at the beginning of the pandemic. How can

What is the Bank of England playing at?

Last week, the Bank of England sent a number of confused messages. One was almost shocking: Andrew Bailey said that it isn’t his job to steer markets on interest rates ‘day by day and week by week’. But as economic commentator Matthew C. Klein dryly noted this is literally his job. It is debatable whether the Bank of England needs to manage the entire yield curve (ie, buying and selling bonds in an attempt to set interest rates years into the future) but the central bank should be in charge of the short end. Those opposing an interest rate rise say that central banks should never shock markets. The Bank

Is the inflation panic over? Probably not

So, is the post-Covid inflation panic over? That is how it looked last month, when the government’s preferred inflation index, CPIH, fell to 2.1 per cent from 2.4 per cent a month earlier. We will have the latest news on Wednesday morning, but for the moment it appears that consumer prices inflation hasn’t taken off like we feared. It is a similar story in the US, where inflation fell back from 5.6 per cent in July to 5.3 per cent in August. The fact that house prices have risen so strongly throughout the deepest recession in modern times ought to be a warning sign Yet there are good reasons to suspect that the summer