As reported by Her majesty the Queen Elizabeth II’s Tax Office, new UK citizens particularly arriving from other European countries pay taxes amounting GBP 8.8 billion above the sum the government invests on their services.
Furthermore, the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC, in its English initials) and also the consultant KPMG, say that the number of job offers without candidates in the country with the necessary skills to fill them stands at its highest levels in the last fifteen years.
Nevertheless, come May, local elections will ensue and polls indicate the dissenting league of traditional English conservatives, UK Independence Party, could oust the country’s third party, the Liberal-Democrats, propped up by its dialectical garbage about a screaming “external danger”. Instead of fighting the monster, PM David Cameron’s party as well as New Labour’s heirs of the once popular Tony Blair, have all unfortunately joined the race towards the fringe votes in the backyard.
“Negative rethoric on immigration from politicians fails to consider the immediate needs of British businesses. The government must address the current restrictions on visas for highly skilled workers. This would allow companies to access pools of people they need to grow and create jobs,” Kevin Green at REC says.
As it happens in other parts of the economy, the causes of this gap between social mass’ behaviour and what would really be convenient seems to have their roots somewhere so deep inside the collective psyche that it cannot easily be reached by hurried solutions.
Another example: the initial average basic salary for permanent workers has recovered in February at a higher speed than in the past six years, which means that pressure on real income will be soon easing for good. In fact, according to the Bank of England, 76,947 loan mortgages were approved last January, the highest figures since November 2007.
For analysts in the City, London’s omnipresent and almighty financial district, all these numbers are but a mere reflection of how weak this British buoyancy is, too much dependent on consumers’ purchasing power. Among the four IPOs announced for the next months, three of them belong to the corporate services industry (Pets at Home, Poundland and King Digital) and just one to the manufacturing sector (Xeros, which makes washing machines).
Indeed, credit for businesses and companies fell in January by some additional GBP 600 million (€ 720 million). During the last eighteen months, the Royal Bank of Scotland along with Santander UK, that is the two main names in UK retail banking, have reduced loan books by GBP 3.7 billion (€ 4.4 billion).
Richard Koo, from Nomura investments, has recently tried to explain in a note that neither British businessmen nor ordinary citizens feel confident to get back into debt. Without a debt floor solid and healthy enough, an economy lacks the minimum financial support to expand.
In 2013, 212,000 immigrants arrived in the UK, or 60,000 more than in 2012 in terms of net flows. It is expected that panic slowly but continuously engulfs the irrational public debate until voting day.
Meanwhile, in order to alleviate their mind from non-existent problems, British can of course resort to remind themselves that they are not part of euro zone and will never do.
Frances Coppola, who was a banker once in a previous life, has very recently summed her voice on to the long list of “euro-bashers”: “Ireland bailed out its banks, partly at the behest of the European Union, which was concerned that Irish bank failures would destabilize the European banking system. The bailout wrecked the Irish economy and forced the Irish government to accept assistance from the combined European Union and IMF, the price for which has been five years of tax hikes and spending cuts exceeded in severity only by those in Greece”.
According to Linda Yueh, one of the youngest and most daring voices of the BBC’s economics reporters, all this sort of hate against euro underlies the inevitable fact that the UK should have further involvement in the euro zone troubles since it is the biggest market for the country’s exports.
More than economists, the UK may be in need of therapy –I know, I know, they are not the only ones.