Ulster Economix Podcast Episode 11: Breaking Bad – September 2021

The podcast that keeps you up to date with what is happening economy-wise in Northern Ireland.  Telling you what you need to know but not necessarily what you want to hear. It is better to be prepared for the economic environment we are operating in and not the world we would like to be in.

There has been no shortage of drama on the economic and political fronts during September. And the drama is focussed on shortages.

A number of crises, that have been the subject of previous podcasts, are converging.  These include supply chain disruption, inflationary pressures and adapting to Brexit. Shortages are becoming ever more problematic from labour to energy.

We have had supply chain disruption intensify most recently with petrol shortages. Some headlines ran with Kung Fuel Fighting as skirmishes broke out in GB petrol station forecourts like something out of a Mad Max movie.

So far NI’s sea-border has prevented any cross-contamination here! Labour shortages, notably amongst HGV drivers, are becoming a major problem and we may see the army called in to assist with the driver shortage affecting petrol stations. Strains in the logistics industry coupled with labour shortages in the food processing industry means this Christmas could be one to remember for all the wrong reasons. Warnings of food and toy shortages have been flagged. Remember these challenges are being overlaid on the new regulatory world that is evolving post-Brexit. The reality is the much lauded Just in Time supply chain is Just not Resilient.

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Podcast: Episode 10 – Survival of the richest – August 2021

The podcast that keeps you up to date with what is happening economy-wise in Northern Ireland.  Telling you what you need to know but not necessarily what you want to hear. It is better to be prepared for the economic environment we are operating in and not the world we would like to be in.

Recessions traditionally follow a standard playbook. A fall in output followed by a lagged rise in job losses and unemployment triggering a decrease in consumer spending hitting retail sales and the housing market.

That was the typical path of recessions. The COVID-19 pandemic spawned a new recessionary variant. The UK economy posted its biggest slump in output in over 300 years.  Yet a comparable rise in unemployment did not occur. Similarly, a fall in house prices was viewed as a ‘no brainer’ but it too did not occur.

Rather than double-digit declines in house prices, almost every major economy is reporting booming house prices, marking the biggest rally in more than two decades.

The local housing market has defied economists’ predictions too.

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Episode 8 | For Flake’s Sake – May 2021

The Ulster Economix Podcast. The podcast that keeps you up to date with what is happening economy-wise in Northern Ireland.  Telling you what you need to know but not necessarily what you want to hear. It is better to be prepared for the economic environment we are operating in and not the world we would like to be in.

It could be said that we have a Ketchup bottle economy at the minute. Shake a ketchup bottle and nothing happens. But eventually we will get covered in red sauce as the blockage is worked free. Something similar is happening in global supply chains at present and this is impacting on all of our lives.

Inflation has been the buzzword in recent weeks around the world. Households are experiencing a pick-up in both consumer prices and house prices. Meanwhile businesses are reporting soaring input costs such as increased freight costs and rising raw material prices. These additional costs will be passed onto firms’ customers in due course. 

January 2021 Podcast: Episode 4 – Trucking Hell

We have published the latest Ulster Economix Podcast.

New Year, new era. January has already heralded much change on both sides of the Atlantic. There is a new president in the White House with Joe Biden. In the UK, the Brexit transition period has ended and through the EU and UK’s Trade and Cooperation Agreement, signed last month, a new chapter in the UK-EU relations has begun. The UK-EU deal that has been secured is unique in that it is the only trade deal in history which creates and adds barriers to trade rather than remove them.