petej + quantitativeeasing   63

Made in Westminster – Sean Wallis | The Convention for Higher Education
This all changed with the removal in 2014 of caps on student numbers. Universities could now compete with each other for students, and market share. The first set of victims have been the post-92 universities, the ex-polytechnics, whose staff are not in the USS pension scheme. Students considering an expensive degree at London Metropolitan University, for example, now found places at King’s College. In London, LMU’s pain has been swiftly followed by that of Westminster University, currently engaged in serial cutbacks of staff.

In this first wave, the USS employers have boomed. Indeed, the Higher Education Statistics Agency reports that sector surpluses rose by a factor of 10 from £158m in 2005/6 to £1.5bn in 2016/17. However, to accommodate the new student numbers, universities needed estate capacity. They started a major programme of investment in new buildings, campuses and student accommodation. To do this they needed to borrow. Whereas some initial loans may have been on favourable terms, as construction costs have increased, institutions have had to borrow on the open market.

Of course, when you borrow in this way you have to declare your assets and your liabilities, including the liability toward the pension fund. It is this new obligation that I believe explains why, in the USS negotiations, UUK employers (led by the most expansionist Russell Group employers) focused on Defined Contribution, rather than, say, a worse Defined Benefit scheme.
education  higherEducation  universities  pensions  USS  valuation  deficit  risk  regulation  quantitativeEasing  banking  bailout  interestRates  gilts  expansion  investment  construction  UUK  RussellGroup 
march 2018 by petej
Eurozone QE: 20 things you need to know | Paul Mason
"4. Here’s the background: after the 2008 crisis, growth was suppressed throughout the world. Not just by a massive debt overhang, but by the knowledge that two key features of neo-liberalism, when it was successful, could not be revived:
a. The global imbalances, whereby China, Japan, the oil countries and Germany produced stuff, suppressed consumption and funded the borrowing of the rich countries; and
b. The financialised lifestyle of the West, where consumption continued to grow, despite low or zero wage growth, because of increased access to credit.

5. So growth is scarce. Meanwhile there is an abundance of three things: labour, capital and oil."
Europe  finance  debt  crisis  ECB  QE  quantitativeEasing 
january 2015 by petej
Fed unemployment mystery holds key to global markets - Telegraph
"The Fed has a two-phase trigger. It aims to wind down bond purchases to zero as the headline jobless rate nears 7pc, and then start to raise rates at 6.5pc. The problem is that unemployment has been dropping faster than expected. It is already 7.3pc and could hit 7pc soon. This would be fine if the economy was roaring back and creating jobs, but it is shedding jobs at a disturbing pace.
Headline unemployment is dropping only because people have stopped looking for work. America lost 347,000 jobs over the past two months, with the labour “participation rate” falling from 63.5pc to 63.2pc, the lowest since the late 1970s when fewer women worked."
USA  economy  economics  FederalReserveBank  unemployment  jobs  work  automation  stimulus  tapering  crisis  capitalism  quantitativeEasing  QE 
september 2013 by petej

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