Am curious about "Street Votes", which seems like a nice little policy.

What is the theory behind the idea that it might be amazing for *growth*? I hope it is not "more construction activity" ... is it through allocation? More people able to live in more productive places? 1/
Suppose the policy knocked the lights out and delivered 100,000 more dwelling places in 5 years in highly productive urban locations.

Then that allowed the people affected to earn 20% more, call it £6000.

That's a one-off rise of £600m in GVA. Nice ... but 0.03% of GDP 2/
As for construction activity, 20,000 more dwelling places/year, finger in the air, that's £1bn of GVA. Sounds a lot - but with construction facing supply capacity limits, I am not sure extra demand here = growth. May be wrong? But it's also one-off 3/
This doesn't mean it is a bad idea. These are really big numbers! Any policymaker who came up with an idea that raised GVA by £100m has justified her whole career. It's just ... the growth question is one that runs to the recurring tens of billions. 4/4

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More from @Gilesyb

13 Sep
This @tonydanker speech to the @CBItweets conference is quite hard-hitting.

Long section shaming the amount of investment the UK government appears to be content with. Absolutely flays a business rates system that he says punishes such investment
Like everyone in the past 5 years, he calls on the Apprenticeship Levy to be reformed. People get the principle, but the delivery needs to be changed
Danker is unflinching in his criticism of the delivery of infrastructure projects. Key example is the delay to nuclear financing. And shipping: "We could leave the world in zero-carbon shipping".
Read 6 tweets
24 Aug
“Divestment... has no clear real-world impact since 10% of the market not buying your stock is not the same as 10% of your customers not buying your product” 

Long counterblast to the (cynical?) optimism around ESG investing, h/t @rbrtrmstrng 1/
I expect a few to say "well, duh - we knew this corporate ESG craze was all greenwash" - but it is nice to see the same points that have been bugging me posed by this expert, such as that one above, and whether less *secondary* investment in X really makes any difference ...2/
Here is part two…
with this superb quote from @pmarca- impact investing “is like a houseboat — not a very good house, not a very good boat.”
Read 5 tweets
22 Aug
Ok. Have mostly taken refuge with the cat, who has finally found a species she distrusts more than the Retriever (pictured). The moment the music started, she hid under the bed 1/
Downstairs, bottles and cans everywhere, including some from dark recesses of the house that I don't think I've seen since we moved here. Rather relieved not to have found an empty vinegar bottle 2/
One of the darker recesses, the larder, is strewn with dog food pellets. I'd take evens on one of the boys getting the munchies, impatient for the gigantic pizza order I made around 9pm, and scarfing a handful 3/
Read 13 tweets
9 Aug
OK, so earlier I tweeted a chart of internationally fully-vaccinated rates, and wondered if someone had split the red and blue US states.
And then I did it and @ritwik_priya wondered if this was an income effect. So I investigated! 1/
Here is the red-blue split in fully vaccinated (FV) rates by time (lefthand side - incidentally, it is depressingly easy to sort the states - very few toss-ups)

But then I looked at GDP per capita and compared to latest FV-rate 2/ ImageImage
... and you can see a *rough* correlation. The slope of the chart says the FV rate rises 0.5 ppts per $1000 of GDP per capita.

So *then* I split that out, i.e. measured the distance from the sloped line, and compared Democrat and Republican states. You get this: 3/ Image
Read 4 tweets
5 Aug
I have a NEW PUBLICATION out, about productivity and much more. If there were one theme it is this: you can't restore UK productivity growth simply by going all-out on tech-rich, "high value" sectors.

Here is a thread 1/…
Let's start with the Great Slowdown that began in 2008. Keep this in mind: had we kept to the trend of 1998-08 GDP growth, the economy in 2018 would have been £300bn+ larger.

Was this because the UK "put its eggs in all the wrong baskets?" NO! 2/
It is a popular, miserabilist idea: Britain stopped making things, failed to get into new, high-tech industries, instead got into shopping, basic admin - the low value services. And hence we slipped off the growth train.

But the numbers are not there: 3/
Read 17 tweets
28 Jul
Josh and BrightBlue have written an astonishingly comprehensive report into how Carbon prices should work, including solid implementable steps.

This thread is great but cannot do the report justice - well worth reading. My very brief thoughts: 1/
Really like the three principles.
1. Carbon pricing is about behaviour change, not necessarily revenue raising.
2. Needs to be fair to avoid gilet jaunes issues
3. It is just a piece of the puzzle, not the whole jigsaw 2/
(am particularly keen on that last principle: the refuge of the lazy laissez faire thinker - like a particular former chancellor- is "just put a price on carbon, the market will fix it." No. It. Won't. But the price helps) 3/
Read 5 tweets

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