Who’s the daddy?

Mark Carney the new Governor of the Bank of England, has broken new ground by becoming the first in his role to set out a plan in relation to interest rates. Earlier this week, following a meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC)  it was announced that interest rates would be kept at 0.5% until the level of employment fell below 7% (it is currently 7.8%). Added to this, it was announced yesterday that they would stay low until at least 2016.  Without wishing to over-egg the power of my crystal ball, we have at Cheshire and Co been intimating that this would be the case for some time.  This morning, the Fourth Estate has been awash with stories of a further boom in the buy-to-let market.  As of now, buy-to-let loans make up 13% of gross lending and experts in the field are predicting that this is set to increase dramatically.  Without wishing to sound like the voice of doom, I have to comment that I  have seen this all before; after every boom there is a bust.  After everyone has followed the experts’ advice and dived headfirst into the buy-to-let market, what will happen when interest rates go up by 1 or 2%?  Actually, I can go someway to answering that; the experts will be advising people to invest in fracking north of Macclesfield.

Competing with the interest rate story we are told that Great Britain’s only pair of giant pandas Tian Tian and Yang Guang (my fellow mandarin speakers will  know that these translate to ‘Sweetie’ and ‘Sunshine’), are expecting twins.  However Mr Valentine, Director of Edinburgh Zoo’s Giant Panda Programme has voiced a note of caution;  the twins may have different fathers, one of whom may be Yang Guang.  That may be a surprise in Edinburgh, but would not be deemed to be unusual in Cwmbran.  As you can tell, I am fitting very well into my role as an ambassador for Torfaen…