Sun set to shine on UK economy again – and Britain’s luckiest man will get the glory | Personal Finance | Finance


With the Labour Party 20 points ahead in the polls, it will take an almighty turnaround for the Conservative Party to have any hope of regaining power. It’s more likely they will get wiped out instead.

After 14 years in power, the Tories have left the UK in a sorry state and voters are not in a forgiving mood.

Yet there are signs that things are picking up.

First, the UK is pulling out of last year’s shallow recession. After falling 0.1 percent in December, the economy rose by 0.2 percent in January. It’s not much, but it is a symbolic step forward and it’s just the start.

The UK economy is expected to grow 0.8 percent this year, according to the Office for Budget Responsibility. It will then grow at twice the speed in 2024, rising 1.9 percent, then by two percent in 2026.

These aren’t brilliant figures. The UK should ideally be growing by at least three percent a year. It’s better than we’ve seen, though, and other things look promising, too.

Sterling is rising against the US dollar, euro and a host of other foreign currencies. 

That is a vote on the strength of the UK economy, which is set to be the fastest growing in Europe.

A stronger pound will make imports cheaper and be a huge boost for holidaymakers, with the pound going 75 percent further in some popular tourist hotspots.

Inflation climbed slightly to four percent in January, disappointing many, but analysts expect a big fall in April, when the energy price cap is cut.

It could drop to just two percent, bringing it back to the Bank of England’s target. Interest rate cuts should swiftly follow.

That will be a real lift for homeowners, shoppers and businesses.

Things are getting better. They’re just not getting better fast enough for Rishi Sunak.

Instead, events are slotting nicely into place for the man who will almost certainly replace him as Prime Minister, Labour leader Keir Starmer.

We don’t yet know when the election will be. It now looks like Sunak will wait until at least November, in the hope that voters will feel a bit better off and thank him on polling day.

He’ll be lucky.

Sunak is waiting because what else can he do? He’s facing a drubbing if he calls an election now.

For Starmer, polling day cannot come soon enough.

READ MORE: Britain’s GDP finally rises as economy grows by 0.2% in latest quarter

Starmer is going to get his dream job at the perfect time, just as the economy enjoys lift off.

He will get the credit, even if he has nothing to do with it. How lucky can you get?

Sunak must be cursing his own luck. All his efforts will achieve little aside from making Starmer look better than he really is.

It’s great news for Starmer, Britain’s luckiest man. Unless he and shadow chancellor of Rachel Reeves mess things up, by implementing growth-destroying economic policies.

Which could easily happen. Labour has form on this front.

We don’t know, because Starmer and Reeves aren’t saying what they’re going to do.

And they don’t need to. This election is going to fall into Labour’s lap, thanks to Tory incompetence and the swings of the economic cycle.

The UK will still be in dire straits, but things will feel better than they were and Starmer will get the credit. Lucky, lucky Starmer. Unlucky Sunak.

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