Kathryn Cooper in the Sunday Times reports that female progress in the labour market has stalled for the first time in three generations. Female employment has risen steadily since the 1970s, but figures from LSE suggest the proportion of women working who were born between 1985 and 1994 is lower than the previous generation. While the recession is said to have played a part, the report also argues there are social and cultural changes at play such as women having children earlier, and focussing on their job later in life. (Sunday times, p. 10, Kathryn Cooper)
House prices are growing at their fastest rate for three years according to Nationwide and Hometrack, with annual growth of 3%. The news will comes as a boost to George Osborne and the Help to Buy scheme, with growth in the regions (Midlands, Northeast) as well as in London. (Kathryn Cooper, p. 11, Sunday Times)
Parents who give their newborns a headstart in life by saving into children’s pension schemes could build up a £1.3m pot by the time their child reaches retirement. The figure, from Hargreaves Lansdown, is based on saving £240 a month for 18 years in a self-invested personal pension (Sipp) with 7% growth and 1.5% in annual charges.
James Charles, Sunday Times (Money), p.4
A sale of the 39% government stake in Lloyds is set to be announced following its half year results on Thursday. The figures are expected to show balance, with the write off of billions of pounds worth of bad debt making the numbers more attractive. In contrast RBS is set to announce a longer stay in public hands as it searchs for a replacement for Stephen Hester. It is believed an internal promotion is most likely to ease the transition. (The Observer, p. 46, Jill Treanor, Telegraph Business, p. 1, James Quinn, Kamal Ahmed)