Saturday, 7 July 2012

Bankers try more of the same to solve crisis

From the Morning Star

Alarmed Bank of England policy-makers pressed the red button today and printed another £50 billion to try to boost the struggling British economy.

The bank's Monetary Policy Committee voted to increase the quantitative easing programme from £325bn to £375bn in a desperate attempt to drag the country out of a double-dip recession.

It held interest rates at a record low of 0.5 per cent.

They took the decision amid signs that the economy deteriorated in June, with the construction sector in reverse and the services sector suffering its worst performance for eight months.

The bank said the decision to pump more money into the economy came as Britain's output had barely grown for a year and-a-half amid signs its main export markets are slowing.

Left Economics Advisory Panel co-ordinator Andrew Fisher said: "The use of quantitative easing is based on the assumption that our economic system is in crisis due to a lack of available credit.

"But the economy does not suffer from a lack of credit - it suffers from a lack of demand.

"Unemployment, underemployment and wage constraint have all produced a situation in which living standards are falling.

"The Bank of England's now £375bn quantitative easing programme has clearly not been used to extend credit to meet any growing demand.

"Instead, the banks have used the extra liquidity to speculate in derivatives markets and to invest in safer foreign markets. It's good for the banks, but bad for the UK economy."

TUC leader Brendan Barber added: "This will only stop things getting even worse, not kickstart the economy."

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