Is the UK Economy in a Worse Position Now Than it was Twelve Months Ago?

Essay by SkotdoGCollege, UndergraduateA-, September 2005

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There are a few factors that have to be taken into consideration when assessing how well an economy is doing. These factors are called economic indicators. The economic indicators that I shall be using to gauge how well the UK's economy is faring are inflation (both RPI and CPI), unemployment rates, balance of payments and economic growth.

I shall begin by evaluating inflation. RPI Inflation in July 2004 was 3%, whereas in July 2005, it was 2.4%. The upward effect came from a 2005 rise in petrol/crude oil prices compared to the drop in prices in the previous year. Furniture also provided an upward effect, as did increased charges on many banking services. However, there were some additional downward effects from housing components that were not included in the CPI. CPI Inflation in July 2004 was 1.4%, whereas in July 2005, it was 2.2%. The upward effects were similar to those for RPI. The CPI inflation rate is just about average for the rest of the EU, the average being 2%. However, despite RPI inflation decreasing by 0.1%, the CPI inflation increased by 0.8%, which suggests that the UK economy is in a worse position now than it was twelve months prior. This is because, the higher the inflation rate, the higher the price of goods. These high prices cause other nations to go to other countries to import goods from which can cause a recession.

The next economic indicator that I shall be using is unemployment rates. In the second quarter of 2004, the working age employment rate was 74.6% compared to the second quarter of 2005, which had a working age employment rate of 74.4%, 0.2% lower than the previous year's rate. The unemployment rate in the second quarter of 2004 was 4.8%. However, in the second...