Economic Affairs
Subscribe to Economic Affairs Contents: Introduction (page 169) ‘Market failure’ arguments are a poor guide to policy (pages 170-183) by Ryan Bourne The political economy of ‘ordered competition’ in European telecoms (pages 184-196) by Dmitrii Trubnikov Ekaterina Trubnikova Is entrepreneurship a virtue? (pages 197-215) by Robert C B Miller The Internet's impact on trademark applications ... Continue reading

Opportunities and challenges for UK agriculture

This paper examines the current state of UK agriculture and makes recommendations as to what the long term goals of a UK agricultural policy could be, after the UK leaves the EU, in a way that maximises the potential benefits of a genuinely independent agricultural policy, while minimising the disruptions caused by leaving the EU. ... Continue reading

IEA Financial Services unit releases report outlining the unintended consequences of MifID II regulations

MiFID II, together with MiFIR (Regulation (EU) No 600/2014), was intended to create a more transparent, competitive and integrated financial market in the EU by reducing trading outside regulated markets, increasing protection for investors and consumers, and improving financial stability. The Directive harmonises the EU regulatory regime with respect to organisational requirements for investment firms, ... Continue reading

State or Market?

Summary: Medical and nursing care have been separated from social care by deliberate design since the creation of the NHS. This is true with regard to the institutional and policy frameworks and also with regard to how care is provided in practice. This divide, even if once justified, is now entirely artificial. People spend far ... Continue reading
Summary In contrast to the recent past when even Labour politicians were ‘intensely relaxed’ about high pay, there is now widespread concern about the apparent excesses of some pay structures in corporate businesses. Top pay has risen much faster than average levels of pay in the last twenty years. This is in part the consequence ... Continue reading

An economic analysis of the Treasury’s treatment of privately rented housing

Summary: The private rented sector has played a critical role in increasing and improving housing provision in the UK. Around 80 per cent of private sector tenants are satisfied with their homes and satisfaction in the sector compares favourably with that in the social rented sector. This contribution has gone unrecognised: instead, landlords have been ... Continue reading

Shadow Monetary Policy Committee votes to hold bank rate

At its second full meeting of 2019, held in April, the Shadow Monetary Policy Committee (SMPC) voted by a narrow margin to keep Bank rate at 0.75%. Five voted to hold rates and four voted for a ¼ point rise. Four main reasons were given by those voting to keep rates at 0.75%. First, raising ... Continue reading

The benefits of unprotected capitalism and unruly shareholders

Summary Free-market capitalism requires creative destruction. It is important that poorly performing companies are allowed to go out of business or allowed to be taken over, and it is equally important that new companies are able to replace them. If company management is not maximising shareholder value, then the shareholders should be entitled to act. ... Continue reading

IEA releases briefing on the reality of customs union membership

Summary:  A customs union with the EU would come with significant costs to the UK’s economic, trade and foreign policies. Such an arrangement would also fail, by itself, to eliminate trade ‘friction’ with the EU. To do so would also require alignment with the Single Market rules for goods. A customs union would also come ... Continue reading