This is an outstanding economic survey of the UK from OECD. It’s a must read. Check it out!
via Economic Survey of the United Kingdom 2015.
There are lots of excellent graphics but here are the key areas for improvement:
- Labour productivity
- Infrastructure investment
- Sustainable bank lending
Personally, I tend to endorse the report. Here’s my take on the highlights.
Labour productivity needs serious attention, especially in the public sector and regulated industries, where broken processes are often given greater priority than customer service. Government policy needs to give massive focus to improving relevant skills and facilitating exports, with increased language training.
George Osborne has been incredibly slow to invest in infrastructure, both in the public and private sectors.
Bank lending in the UK is still seriously problematic with small businesses and start-ups deprived of funds – banks seem to work on credit scoring models and judgment is subordinated. In recent years the major banks have been delayering, getting rid of their more experienced staff. In my view, the UK will continue to be constrained until the government seriously shakes up the banks.
The Banks in the UK a little worse than useless. They really do not have too much competition and as a result generally offer similar products. As for lending criterion, they have managed to put together requirements which require for many property development loans, A debenture; 1st Charge on a property; A Valuation from their appointed valuer at my expense; A monitoring surveyor in the case of building project costing thousands of pounds, an fee to enter into the transaction and a fee to exit the transaction; a personal guarantee and as far as I can tell a mortgage over my wife, children and grandchildren!
The sooner we get some competition the better however I am not holding my breath as the regulatory requirements of the FCA together with the Capital restrictions from The Bank of England make life for any new entrant almost impossible.
I find it amazing that in many cases the bonus’ paid at year end are well in excess of the dividends paid to the shareholders and seem to bear no relation to the level of skill and risk involved.