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Interesting rate stories

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Interesting rate stories

A figure from the ONS, via AJ Bell: 10 million Britons have never seen interest rates above 1% in their whole lives.

Since interest rates look now, finally, to be heading upwards, they had better get used to the idea.

And within that 10 million must be scores of financial journalists, for whom rising rates have always been theoretical rather than a reality.

For the entrepreneurial flak, opportunity knocks.

For a start, they can explain what happens when rates rise, to those who have never seen it before and to those of us who have forgotten.

The knock on effects are myriad, and not all bad. Remind us.

Beyond that, there are a hundred stories. What would rates going to 2% by Christmas 2022 suck out of the economy? How much more would the nation’s mortgages cost?

What extra might we earn on our savings? (I don’t mean an extra 0.2%, I want to know what that is across the entire economy.)

And that’s just the simple stuff. Around that there are things to be said on bonds, pensions, the national debt and pretty much everything else.

For some businesses, even a small rise in rates might be enough to put them under. Which ones?

Moreover, we might have forgotten that banks are sneaky when it comes to interest rate rises. They tend to move well before the Bank of England does. How do they justify that?

We want some big, plausible numbers, then some qualifying, intelligent commentary.

I bet the weekend personal finance sections are full of advice on what folk should do next on mortgages. There are wider stories beyond the PF pages dying to be told.

Press release of the day

A reality check here on all of the ESG stuff from RSM. Nearly half of “middle market” businesses, apparently that is firms with turnover of between £10m and £750m, don’t really know what ESG is.

Even some of those that do aren’t measuring their environmental impact or goals.

Mark Taylor at RSM says: ‘ESG is about responsible business. Being out of tune with the net zero carbon agenda and social responsibility is not a viable option. It’s now a clear business imperative as reticence or inactivity in this space could have very real impacts on future growth.”

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