WEEKLY COMMENT 10-01-2013

WEEKLY COMMENT 10-01-2013

By Barry Edwards

 A Happy and Prosperous New Year to everyone from the Txtreme team.

As we moved into the New Year we stepped back from the fiscal cliff and started the year with unenthusiastic acceptance of the political agreement from the markets and financial commentators. The result, surprisingly, was a boost to stock markets around the world and a general air of confidence prevailed for a few days. This seems to be dissipating fairly quickly as the forecasts for 2013 are becoming gloomier. read more

WEEKLY COMMENT 20-12-2012

WEEKLY COMMENT 20-12-2012

By Barry Edwards

In the UK the year of 2012 has not turned out to be as bad as many of us thought it was going to be even though we have gone through another official recession of two quarters of shrinking gross domestic product (GDP).

The Olympics transformed everyone’s doom and gloom into outright enthusiasm especially in London and the south east. Things are clearly not that rosy in the north but in general there is an air of confidence beginning to flourish although it is still very tenuous. Any major economic disaster story could wreck that feeling but at the moment there does not appear to be anything on the horizon that could be that threatening. read more

WEEKLY COMMENT 13-12-2012

WEEKLY COMMENT 13-12-2012

By Barry Edwards

 

There has been a lot of discussion concerning the UK status within the EU in the last few weeks. It seems that The Conservative Party is splitting itself into three representing;

  1. Definitely remain in the EU.
  2. Come out of the EU.
  3. Repatriate some of the powers but remain a member mainly for trade purposes as originally decided in the last referendum.

It appears that The Prime Minister and Boris Johnson, who has become a lead spokesman on this matter, are both seeking to promote option 3 and then ask the nation in a referendum whether they agree with that or come out altogether.

The debate is attempting to finally resolve the EU question so that the politicians and business can be certain how to plan ahead with full support from the nation.  If the UK was a large company this would be a very reasonable approach and makes perfect sense. Unfortunately, we are a diverse nation of people who have very strong views not all of them based on the actual facts of the situation. read more

WEEKLY COMMENT 6-12-2012

WEEKLY COMMENT 6-12-2012

By Barry Edwards

There was a vast amount of information released connected with the Autumn Statement which has taken some time to skim through and check for relevance to business.

The Autumn Statement was not the grand economic growth plan that we were lead to believe was going to be unveiled by the Chancellor. In previous weekly comments; Lord Heseltine’s report and infrastructure were discussed which were referred to in the statement but not as a cohesive plan to really make a difference. read more

Weekly Comment 23-11-2012

 

 

WEEKLY COMMENT 23-11-2012

By Barry Edwards

It is surprising that financial markets have been virtually unaffected by the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. Although we now have a ceasefire, it is beyond most people’s belief that this will be the end of the troubles.

It is clear both sides are at fault and the failure to recognise their own shortcomings seems to be the real problem behind the unending antagonism.  It does not help that outside influence plays a big role in the actions of the Palestinians but ultimately the cause of the reaction by the people is simple poverty and the lack of opportunity to make a better life for themselves without unwelcome interference. read more

New Category; Questions and Answers

This category has been created for anyone to ask questions about business matters of any kind to help with growing a company. There is a team of advisors available to answer any question that you may have regarding the problems that occur with smaller businesses.

Where the answer to a problem is standard, it will be responded to in the open Business Forum on this site for all to see. If the answer needs a more specific response and requires some private details to respond properly, you can ask for an advisor to contact you by email or telephone. This will be free of charge and will not be posted on the site unless you agree that it can be. read more

Some Interesting facts about Text Messaging

UK is now texting more than talking

Mobile voice calls in decline for the first time ever, as more switch to text and online communications

Newer ways of communicating led by 16-24s, with texting and social networking more frequently used than either phone calls or face to face communications

The average Briton now sends 50 texts per week

Two fifths of UK adults now own a smartphone, with the same proportion saying their phone is the most important device for accessing the internet

Tablet ownership has jumped from 2% to 11% in 12 months read more

WEEKLY COMMENT 16-11-2012 By Barry Edwards

The American presidential elections produced the expected result and have created the predicted further uncertainty in financial markets mainly because of the stalemate in congress which is still controlled by the Republican Party.
In effect, this means the Democrats and Republicans have to agree on the budget for America for the next year, referred to as the ‘fiscal cliff’, which is causing reservations amongst investors who have little faith in compromise being achieved before the final hour.
The USA government cannot increase the amount of government bonds that can be issued without the consent of Congress. Therefore, before permission can be given to the USA Treasury to instruct the Federal Reserve (the central bank) to issue bonds to cover the fiscal deficit, agreement must be reached. The fiscal deficit is the difference between the amount of tax raised and the forecast expenditure by government for the next fiscal year which for 2013 is estimated to be about $1000 billion.
You might say ‘well what has that got to do with us here in the UK?’ The reason is that the USA economy is still the largest in the world and does have an effect around the world purely by the impact of the purchasing power of government and business that affects all other countries worldwide.
Although the emerging market economies are expanding, they are still partly dependent on American imports to maintain that growth. Any doubt about this is reflected in financial markets and depresses confidence.
In Europe, the USA election has not changed anything dramatically; however public reaction to the austerity being imposed in the Mediterranean countries is beginning to dominate the news causing concern for the politicians. We will have to see whether this resistance to the severe government cutbacks becomes more intense to make a judgement on the effect it will have on decision making and the survival of the Euro itself.
That is a brief summary of the markets and the general economic situation in the last week. read more

Venture Beyond

A new concept in business growth development and funding …

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

If you are a small growing business and you want advice about how to attract finance, development and support, where would you go?

Maybe you would speak to your accountant, bank manager, your friends and anyone who might be able to help.

You will not find one organisation that could provide you with everything you need including financial support.

The government has recognised this problem and has made many attempts at trying to solve it, spending large sums on grants, Business Link and Development Agencies. read more

The Exploits of Starsky

The Exploits of Starsky

The Blackbird and the Black Widow

This is a story of a cat trying to sleep peacefully in the sun lying on the warm earth out of the way of everyone causing no disturbance.

Before we get into the story, it is important to explain that the Black Widow is a water pistol and not the venomous North American spider of which the female devours the male after mating. A trait that has not been adopted widely by the human race or cats; a great advantage mammals have over male spiders! read more

The Economic Growth Plan

ECONOMIC GROWTH PLAN

By Barry Edwards

Overview

All the commentators and advisors writing about the banking and government debt crisis make reference to the vital part of the solution to the problem being a suitable economic growth plan to stimulate business activity.

Although the solution is agreed unanimously, there is no proposal presented by anyone explaining how this can be done.

The discussion is currently dominated by the Euro zone survival, banking solvency and budget deficit problems mainly in Europe and the USA. The politicians are beginning to work through a plan that may finally resolve these crises. read more

TXTREME WEEKLY COMMENT

By Barry Edwards

Hurricane Sandy has dominated the news this week moving any financial announcements out of the headlines except the report by Michael Heseltine which was presented to the government and announced to the press on Wednesday (31 October 2012).

The full report is 233 pages long and is full of research and statistical information supporting the main recommendations, the Financial Times has published a summary of it. Their brief synopsis is set out below.

Growth. Need for long-term vision. He calls for a long-term growth strategy and a National Growth Council, chaired by the prime minister, senior ministers and government advisors. read more