Friday, 4 February 2011

The BoE has a lot to answer for

Adrian Ash at BullionVault puts the dire situation of UK savers in perspective:
Here in the UK, for example, last month’s VAT tax increase, together with the zero returns still being offered to cash savers, have most likely taken the real return on bank deposits to new 30-year lows. The last time cash savings were losing value at this pace – worse than 4 pence in the Pound annualised – inflation stood at record peace-time levels, threatening to crush the economy. But the net effect today is just the same for retained wealth.
In a related article, he discusses "forced risk":
THE LONGER that interest rates stay below inflation, the more people will be forced to take more risk to defend what money they've got.
So the longer that interest rates stay below inflation, the more people will in fact be forced to take more risk, pushed out of cash-in-the-bank to speculating in physical assets, leveraged betting and "high risk-reward" contracts. Ever more brokers, shysters and shills will look to help them, too.
That pretty much sums up how I feel. All I want to do is work hard, and preserve what little wealth I've got. I resent being pushed into risky investments that I don't properly understand.

The government needs to get out of the interest rate business, and stop debasing our currency. Then the people who truly generate wealth can get ahead, rather than the middle men and snake oil salesmen in financial services.

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