According to mortgage lenders Nationwide, house prices have risen by 1.3% in August which is the largest monthly rise in two years, however overall values are still lower than they were a year ago with an average house in the UK costing £164,729. This increase is most likely impacted by the fact that stamp duty for first time buyers ended earlier in the year.
In response to a report by the Treasury Committee, the government has defended cutting the top tax rate to 45p stating that HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) had set out the strategy behind the cuts ‘in detail’ and that the impact of the rate cut will be monitored.
The British Chamber of Commerce (BCC) has urged the government to make a stance and boost investment in the economy as well as suggesting that the Bank of England should start buying company loans again in order to help end the double dip recession. The BCC believes that decisive action could boost the struggling economy. These comments are likely to pile the pressure on the Chancellor who is currently on course to miss achieving deficit targets by ‘two or three years’.
Headline jobless figures announced by Eurostat hit a record 18 million in July as recession takes hold across the 17-nation euro zone, the highest reported figure since records began in 1995. Unemployment in Germany increased for the fifth month in a row, with almost 3 million people out of work, France is even worse with August unemployment data showing a jump in people out of work and Spain and Greece reporting jobless rates amongst the under 25’s at 50%.
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