2019 forecasts

The FT has started the new year with a bang by asking economists for their forecasts for 2019.

The article itself offers more detail but this is is a small selection of the pretty devastating comments:

“Given the political shambles . . . the outlook is anything from lacklustre to catastrophic, but who knows?” said Diane Coyle, professor of public policy at Cambridge. Nina Skero, head of macroeconomics at the Centre for Economics and Business Research, said that whatever its long-term effects, “in 2019, Brexit will be either bad or awful for the UK economy”….
Even the handful of economists who believe Brexit will eventually benefit the economy were cautious about the short term outlook. Gerard Lyons, who has advocated a “managed no deal”, said the economy “could easily come to a standstill in the early months” of 2019 and that plans should be in place for both monetary and fiscal stimulus in the second quarter….
Many respondents noted that even if a disorderly Brexit was averted, uncertainty over the UK’s future trading relations will limit the potential for a rebound, with the UK unlikely to return to pre-referendum levels of growth or to perform as well as its main trading partners.

I had missed till now that even David Davis has said that the ‘upsides’ of Brexit are ‘vanishing’.

And Steve Keen, previously a Brexit advocate, thinks that the situation has been so mishandled that Brexit will now offer no economic advantage at best.

As the situation has changed, both Steve Keen and David Davis have changed their views – why, I have to wonder, is it alleged that  ‘democracy’ prevents this for the rest of us?



  1. Ivan Horrocks -

    A very simple answer to that question, Peter: because the leave side know they would loose if another vote were held, not least because this time many people will be alert to their lies and malpractice. And so everything must be done to ensure another vote isn’t taken – including as we see on a regular basis, talking up the idea of civil unrest and so on (but note when Brexiteers take this line it’s not to be seen as an example of ‘project fear’, whereas any economic data or projection that indicates Brexit will have a harmful effect, is).

  2. Peter May -

    Agreed. I think civil unrest is far more likley if we crash out without any deal. And the Northern Ireland police have already put in a request for 1000 mainland police if we do crash out..
    It is a complete nervous breakdown of UK government that we could consider doing this to ourselves.

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