Judging Gordon Brown-w32dasm

How should we, the mere public, judge Gordon Brown’s performance as Chancellor and latterly as Prime Minister of Great Britain? The Labour Government under Tony Blair come in to power in the May of 1997 and had inherited a strong economy together with the granary full of gold reserves from his predecessor, Ken Clarke. Gordon Brown the Chancellor had presented a mini-Budget on 2nd July 1997 but in economic terms it was of no great concern. He was lucky enough to inherit from his predecessor a strong legacy and an economy that needed no real serious attention. I think that 17th March 1988 was the beginning of the end as this was the date of Gordon Brown’s first full budget. Rather than cover some of his very well known gaffes,that he has made, like his pension smash and grab raid and his selling of the gold reserves I thought I would cover just four economic barometers and these are: The Rate of exchange, Job Creation, Unemployment and the performance of the UK Stock Exchange. Strength of Sterling – One factor to take into account is the strength of the economy is the value of sterling against other major currencies. It does I think provide a barometer on what the rest of the business world thinks of your country and your Government. When Gordon Brown was a member of the Opposition, he always used to taunt the incumbent Conservative government with the statement that "A weak currency arises from a weak economy, which in turn is the result of weak government." So lets use his own yard stick to see how he has performed. Since the 17th March 1998 sterling has fallen against the US $ by 8% £1 on 17th March 1998 bought US $1.67 whereas today it will buy US $ 1.53. But when you take into account the weak economy and recession in the United States and the weakness of the US $ this is in reality very weak performance. The Euro was not a monetary unit on the 17th March 1998 but using the same basket of currencies that make up the euro sterling has fallen by some 26% as our pensioners who have retired to warmer climes are very well aware. So on the question of the strength of currency the weakness of Sterling shows that his performance is abysmal and he falls on his own sword. Job Creation – Since the Labour Government came into power in May 1997 almost 1.7 million new jobs have been created for those people of working age and at first this sounds very good for Britain and British workers. How ever the news is not so good as when you look a little further as 1.64 million of these new jobs went to foreign-born workers. So it has to be a very well done for creating more jobs but then it has done nothing for the indigenous population. So I think overall it is a complete failure for the electorate. Unemployment – Unemployment stands at 7.8% and in 1998 it was 6.3%. So for a Labour government an increase of 25% is a failure. There is a lot more pain in these figures when you look at the regional figures:- The North East, West Midlands and Wales have an unemployment rate currently of over 9% that is nearly one in ten. In October 2006 Wales was under 5% the North East and West Midlands 6.5% in less than four years we have a 50% increase. The North West, London and Yorkshire & the Humber have a current rate of over 8.5%. In October 2006 the London area was just over 7% the North West was just over 5% and Yorkshire & the Humber was just under 6%. Apart from the area of London the others have increased again by the order of 50%. In Scotland and the area of the East Midlands unemployment currently is over 7.5%. In October 2006 the figures were as low as 5% and 5.5% respectively. Currently the unemployment figures for Northern Ireland the South West and the South East are just over 6% with the East being just over 6.5%. In 2006 the figures for the South West were 4% and the South East and Northern Ireland just over 4% with the East at 5%. The figures really begin to deteriorate month by month from October 2007 just after Gordon Brown became Prime Minister in June 2007. Stock Exchange – On 17th March 1998 the FTSE 100 stood at 5,834 and today Tuesday 13th April 2010 it stands at 5,761. So after 12 years the index stands lower. Basically one does not need to be a rocket scientist to work out that this is very pathetic performance and after allowing for inflation the performance is even worse. Even in a recession over such a long time period you would still expect some growth. Lets say that we would expect say an average of 2% per annum compound then the FTSE index would be standing at just under 7,400. As I have said above Gordon Brown was the Chancellor from 1997 and Prime Minister from June 2007 and all of the economic problems in the UK have happened under his watch. But he claims that all the problems are Global and are not of his making so lets look at how the other world stock markets have been doing. The Paris bourse which is reflected in the CAC 40 index stands at 4,046 compared to 3,500 in March 1998 an increase of 15%. The German Dax has increased from 4,000 to 6,200 an increase of more than 50%. Brown has said that all the problems came from America so lets see how their markets have done and guess what they have done very well. In 1998 the Dow Jones Index stood at 8,799 and it is now over 10,857 an increase of over 23%. Based on the performance of the other global stock markets what Gordon Brown says makes little or no sense. I think he just does not want to acknowledge his failings when he wss Chancellor of the Exchequer. In summary the value of Sterling is low,the creation of new jobs has not benefited the indigenous population, the dole queues have got longer and the UK stock exchamge lags behind our global partners. 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