News Headlines: 24th December

Economics:

The chancellor is expected to bring forward a bill in 2013 to ringfence retail banking as proposed in the Vickers report. A cross-party banking commission has also proposed giving regulators powers to impose legal duties on bank directors to prevent them from finding holes in the ring fencing, as well as a reserve power to break up banks completely if ring fencing fails. FT, p.1.

Property:

House prices in England and Wales are set to decline in 2013, according to Hometrack. The firm has recorded six consecutive months of price falls, and as a result prices fell in two thirds of postcodes in 2012. However, the capital continues to buck the trend, and the average London house price is now 10% above its 2007 peak. Times, p.33, FT p.3

Personal Finance:

The Express has taken an untypically negative view on mortgages, arguing that mortgage costs are likely to soar next year because of a potential rise in interest rates. They state that many economists are penciling in a rise at the end of 2013 – 18 months earlier than anticipated. A rise of 0.5% would add £500 to annual repayments on a £100,000 mortgage. Express, p.4

Recruitment:

Businesses have turned to temps in the place of permanent staff in 2012 according to the Association of Professional Staffing Companies. They calculate that permanent placements fell by 2% in the year, while temporary roles picked up the slack, rising by 4%. IT proved the most active sector, with temporary hiring up 6%. Media and marketing saw permanent placements fall by 15%, although temporary hires were up 8%. Times, p.35

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