IFS Zooms In: The Economy
Job vacancies, labour shortages and a 'high-wage economy'
Season 2, Ep. 20
From HGV drivers, to strawberry pickers, to doctors and nurses, the UK seems to be facing labour shortages across many different industries.
As the pandemic recedes, and the impacts of Brexit begin to reveal themselves, the government have insisted that this is part of the transition to a 'high-wage economy'. What is happening in the labour market? Which sectors are facing the biggest challenges? And what can policy-makers do to help?
This week, we're joined by Jonathan Cribb and Xiaowei Xu, IFS experts on labour markets and jobs.
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10. Work from home: what does the future look like?37:38Since the start of the pandemic in March 2020, the topic of working from home has been everywhere and has seemingly affected everything. From big companies calling workers back to the office and city centre food chains struggling, to house price jumps in rural areas and zoom fatigue, the transition to work from home is one of the biggest shifts in working patterns in the last century.But what evidence do we have on the success of remote working? Are people more or less productive at home? And what does the future hold?In this episode, Paul speaks to Professor Nick Bloom, a Professor at Stanford University, former IFS-er and leading expert on working from home. Find out more: https://ifs.org.uk/podcastBecome a member: https://ifs.org.uk/individual-membership
9. What's wrong with inflation?31:51Over the past year, the UK has seen very high inflation, affecting households and businesses across the country.But what is actually wrong with inflation? How do we measure it? And what is the way out of it?We speak to Chris Giles, economics editor at the Financial Times and former IFS economist, and Peter Levell, Associate Director at IFS, both inflation experts.Find out more: https://ifs.org.uk/pensions-reviewBecome a member: https://ifs.org.uk/individual-membership
8. Why politicians need to think long-term about pensions30:11From declining homeownership rates and low pension saving, to high numbers of self-employed people with no pensions at all, it seems that future generations face steep challenges in retirement.Recently, IFS launched a new review of the pensions system, supported by the Abdrn Financial Fairness Trust, to look into these issues and seek policy solutions to help politicians navigate these challenges.Joining us today to talk through the challenges facing the UK pensions system are Heidi Karjalainen, a researcher at IFS, and Jonathan Cribb, Associate Director at IFS, both who are involved in the review. Find out more: https://ifs.org.uk/pensions-review Become a member: https://ifs.org.uk/individual-membership
7. The stealth tax rise29:32To many, the start of the new tax year in April will seem quiet, more of the same with no big changes to the tax system announced by the government.But hidden beneath the surface lie a series of stealthy tax rises - freezes to thresholds which coupled with rising inflation are projected to raise around £30 billion for the Treasury over the next few years and hit household finances hard.Here to reveal the truth are Helen Miller, Head of Tax at IFS, and Tom Waters, Associate Director at IFS.
6. The Spring Budget Explained36:34Chancellor Jeremy Hunt recently outlined his Spring Budget, with big announcements on childcare, corporation tax, pensions and more.We dive into the detail and bring you our expert analysis on the Budget.Joining us are Ben Zaranko, public finances expert, Christine Farquharson, childcare expert and Helen Miller, tax expert.Find out more: www.ifs.org.uk/podcastBecome a member: https://ifs.org.uk/individual-membership
5. Are high energy prices here to stay?33:05From price caps and pipelines to price guarantees and LPG, the rising cost of energy has been central to understanding the economy over the past year.As we come out the cold winter period, we ask whether high energy prices are here to stay?What is happening with the energy market? Should we expect further price shocks? And can we decarbonise our energy supply while keeping bills affordable? Joining us are Heidi Karjalainen, Research Economist at IFS, and Giles Wilkes, a senior fellow at the Institute for Government and former special adviser to Theresa May on industrial and economic policy.Find out more: www.ifs.org.uk/podcastBecome a member: https://ifs.org.uk/individual-membership
4. How to tax the rich?43:26From non-doms to offshore investment vehicles - how the rich are taxed, and how they avoid it, has been all over the headlines.But who are the 1%? How much tax do they pay? And should government tax them more?Joining us are Helen Miller, Deputy Director at IFS and our Head of Tax, and Dan Neidle, Founder of Tax Policy Associates and a former tax lawyer.Find out more: www.ifs.org.uk/podcastBecome a member: https://ifs.org.uk/individual-membership
3. The state of the NHS46:30With COVID, strikes, staff shortages, an enormous waiting list and an ever-ageing population (amongst other issues), the NHS is coming under greater pressure than ever. In this episode, we take a look at the state of the NHS across a range of areas.How is the service doing at the moment? Will we see a pay settlement for nurses and other workers? And are there any reasons to hope that better days are ahead?Joining us are Saffron Cordery, Deputy Chief Executive of NHS Providers, a membership organisation for NHS acute, ambulance, community and mental health services, and Max Warner, IFS researcher and NHS expert.Find out more: www.ifs.org.uk/podcastBecome a member: https://ifs.org.uk/individual-membership
2. Pandemics, recessions and mental health: young people and jobs in 202331:37Two years ago, in the depths of lockdown, the future for young people looked bleak. Policymakers worried about an unemployment crisis, lost career opportunities and a generation of young people missing out on key milestones.The reality - at least on the jobs front - is far rosier than many predicted. But is it all good news for those who graduated during COVID and entered the jobs market during the work from home era? What about those in non-graduate jobs? And what about the next generation - those who were in school during the peak of COVID?This week we're joined by Sarah O'Connor, employment columnist at the Financial Times, and Xiaowei Xu, Senior Economist at IFS to answer these questions.Find out more: www.ifs.org.uk/podcastBecome a member: https://ifs.org.uk/individual-membership