John O'Neill

Theresa May is heading for a general election landslide

Recent opinion polls have given the Conservatives bigger leads than they’ve had in years. So what if today’s polls were June’s General Election results? According to Electoral Calculus, Labour would lose 47 seats and the Conservatives would gain 51. The SNP may have a clean sweep in Scotland – and it still looks too early

Bank of England holds the base rate at 0.5 per cent

So, the Bank of England didn’t do it: against market expectations that there would be a cut, the base rate has been kept at 0.5 per cent, where it’s been since March 2009. The pound shot up by 1.5¢ against the dollar on the news. #BankRate maintained at 0.5% and Asset Purchase Programme at £375bn.

Labour’s disintegration begins

Will Jeremy Corbyn have a shadow cabinet by the end of the day? By 9am there have already been two departures. As Isabel said on the our Coffee House shots podcast last night, a lot of Labour MPs think the mood of the membership has shifted after the EU referendum and they think this vote of

Bookies anoint Boris as next Tory leader

The betting markets are all-but-ready to crown Boris Johnson as the next Conservative leader. After it became clear that Leave had won, the implied chance of Johnson succeeding David Cameron spiked to over 50 per cent – while the chance of George Osborne taking over plummeted. But these are the same betting markets that predicted a 14

Jo Cox murder suspect had links to neo-Nazi group: report

New allegations are emerging about the man suspected of murdering Jo Cox yesterday. He was named locally as Thomas Mair, and his brother said he had a history of mental illness – and no known interest in politics. But overnight, the Southern Poverty Law Center – a US civil rights campaign group that tracks extremist organisations

Brexit chances surge: live chart of bookmakers’ odds

Two polls putting Leave well clear of Remain – five points according to yesterday’s Guardian/ICM poll, seven points  according to a Times/YouGov poll  – have seen bookies slash their odds on Brexit, implying that it’s more likely than ever before – as shown by the chart above. A few weeks ago, the betting markets thought there was

Nadine Dorries leads calls for Cameron’s resignation

The knives have been out for David Cameron today. The Sunday Telegraph splashed on Priti Patel saying that he is too rich to care about immigration; the Sunday Times on a letter to the PM, signed by Boris Johnson and Michael Gove, calling his failure on the migration target ‘corrosive of public trust in politics’. And the Sunday Times quoted a Tory MP

Business investment falling could be good news for Remain

Today’s migration figures (net migration was 333,000 in 2015, up by 20,000 on the previous year) are bad news for the Remain campaign – but there’s a crumb of comfort for them in today’s GDP and business investment figures. This second estimate of GDP growth is unchanged from last month’s, still saying that the economy

Inflation rises to 0.5 per cent in March

Annual CPI inflation rose by more than forecasters expected to reach 0.5 per cent in March, up from 0.3 per cent in February, figures released today show. The rise was due to a jump in the cost of air fares, which were affected by the timing of Easter. Growth in fuel prices slowed and consumers benefitted

UK economy grew by 0.5 per cent in Q4

GDP growth accelerated to 0.5 per cent the final three months of last year, compared with 0.4 per cent in the previous quarter. Based on this preliminary estimate, the economy grew by 2.2 per cent last year, a little shy of the OBR’s November forecast of 2.4 per cent, and down on 2014’s expansion of 2.9 per

Unemployment falls – but so does pay growth

The unemployment rate fell to 5.1 per cent in the three months to November, putting it at the lowest level since 2006 – and back to its average over the six years before the crisis. Back to what the Bank of England regards as the “equilibrium” rate. [datawrapper chart=””] The other side of the coin is

Inflation stays negative for a second month

Britain stayed in deflation in October, with the Consumer Prices Index falling by 0.1 per cent over the year. So far this year inflation has averaged just 0.02 per cent – the longest run of low inflation since the 1930s. Citi says inflation is likely to turn positive again next month as the effects of last’s

Osborne looks set to miss his deficit target – again

After disappointing figures last month, public borrowing in September came in lower than forecast, at £9.4bn, figures published by ONS today show. VAT, income and corporation tax receipts were all up on last year, and despite the government debt pile growing, interest payments fell by £420m. [datawrapper chart=””] But it still look like it will be

Employment figures show 42,000 more people in work

Employment figures out today show that the number of people in work rose by 42,000 in the three months to July, and the number of unemployed rose by 10,000 to 1.82 million. Earnings are growing strongly too, up by 2.9 per cent over the year for the whole economy, and by 3.4 per cent in

Inflation rate still nailed to the floor

Inflation slumped back to zero in the year to August, down from a rise of 0.1 per cent in July, figures from the Office for National Statistics show, making seven months of little or no inflation. The costs of food, energy and imported goods have been falling, pulling inflation away from the two percent target. [datawrapper chart=””]

Immigration hits a record high

There must be an element of masochism in Theresa May that leads her to promise the electorate something she cannot give them: net migration in the tens of thousands. Figures released today show that the balance of people coming into the county rose to 330,000 in the year to March 2015, putting the Home Secretary further than

Is the jobs miracle over?

No self-congratulatory tweets from George Osborne this morning: The UK has seen its first quarter-on-quarter rise in unemployment for two years, figures released by the ONS show. The number of people in employment fell by 67,000 in the three months from May to March, and the number who are unemployed rose by 15,000. The unemployment