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Investment Briefings

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“….get it done” was a recurrent phrase in the Budget speech of the new Chancellor, Rishi Sunak. It could equally have been “get it spent” or “get it borrowed” as Mr Sunak announced a raft of spending initiatives with few supporting tax increases.

“...austerity is coming to an end – but discipline will remain” were the words the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, used to summarise his October Budget speech. That balance between continued cuts and excessive borrowing was evident in the measures announced.

The Chancellor’s Budget on 8 March was the first of two due in 2017. The final spring Budget came little more than three months after an Autumn Statement that suggested government finances had taken a post-referendum turn for the worse.

Philip Hammond’s first Autumn Statement will also be his last. In 2017 there will be a Spring Budget followed by an Autumn Budget. In early 2018 there will be the first Spring Statement. The Chancellor presented his Autumn Statement against a background of reduced growth forecasts and the “urgent” need to tackle the long-term weaknesses of the UK economy.

This was the third Budget within the space of 12 months. It threatened to be the most difficult of the trio because of constraints imposed by June’s EU referendum and disappointing economic numbers.

Gold fulfils the conditions of a perfect “medium of exchange” (or money). It cannot be created or destroyed by human whim, it has few alternative industrial uses, which might affect its value and it has a very low weight to value ratio (and so is easily transportable).
Though the financial crisis of 2008 was created in America by the collapse in value of US sub-prime, mortgage-backed securities, its consequences have been far more damaging to the European banking system than to those in the US or the UK.
The Asian economies have for several decades delivered faster economic growth rates than Western economies but their stock markets have been far more volatile. Though these growth rates are now receding, they are still expected to be much higher than in Western economies over the next decade