/ Money

Prime Minister May must restore trust to deliver a better deal for consumers

Theresa May

Our recent research has highlighted peoples’ fears over the economy. More than half of households expect it to get worse over the next 12 months. That’s more than double a year ago…

So it’s clear one of the many jobs our new Prime Minister has to do is to help build consumer confidence and restore trust in key markets, like energy, banking and rail, if we’re to have a strong economy.

Will Theresa May be pro-consumer?

Will Theresa May be a pro-consumer Prime Minister? Well as Home Secretary she rarely strayed outside her brief but indications are promising.

In her leadership speech at the start of this week she committed to tackling the governance of big businesses and announced plans to put consumers on company boards.

Her pledge to ‘use and reform competition law so that markets work better for people’ attracted less media attention but included a notable promise to address highly consolidated markets, such as utilities and retail banking.

This is a welcome commitment, given that our research also found that people’s trust in industries to act in their best interest has also declined by an average of 12% over the last year.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise. Which? champion, the Conservative Deputy Chair and MP for Harlow, Rob Halfon, claims that May will be an advocate of a more socially responsible capitalism.

Halfon has determinedly pursued energy companies and petrol price hikes and sees our new PM as someone who will take on so-called ‘crony capitalism’, something also echoed in her first speech as Prime Minister on the steps of Downing Street on Wednesday.

Taking on ‘crony capitalism’

Back in 2013, Theresa May pointed to this in her speech to a ConservativeHome conference. I remember at the time being struck by her commitment to tackle vested interests wherever they’re found. In the speech, she called for action to tackle the ‘appalling absence of care at Mid-Staffordshire hospital’ and ‘the treatment of elderly people at care homes like Winterbourne View’ – something that Which? has sought to address through our Make Complaints Count campaign.

And she also said that the Government should tackle businesses who ‘abuse their market position to keep prices high’ and ‘companies at the less scrupulous end of the credit industry (that) prey on the poorest and most vulnerable families’.

With our research revealing recently that unarranged overdrafts can cost you even more than a payday loan, perhaps our new Prime Minister will back action to tackle punitive bank charges.

Theresa May and Brexit

So there is good cause to hope that consumer issues will be a key part of a May premiership. They’ll certainly need to be central to her biggest challenge – negotiating Britain’s exit from the EU.

It’s vital that Brexit delivers for all consumers. This means ensuring that important rights and benefits, such as cheaper data roaming in other countries, compensation arrangements for flight delays and protecting food safety, are maintained during the negotiations – but also that as we gain new freedoms from EU laws, consumers reap the benefits.

It is also important that Theresa May recognises that a pro-consumer agenda will be a pro-growth agenda. We’ve seen big drops in consumer trust in essential markets, such as rail, energy and banking. That’s why reforms to these important sectors cannot be put on hold as we work out our future relationship with Brussels.

The new Prime Minister has a great opportunity to put consumers right at the heart of her agenda. This is a big ask. But if she can live up to her recent rhetoric, then we can have confidence that empowering and protecting consumers will be a pivotal part of our new Prime Minister’s plans.

Maria says:
4 August 2016

We have voted Brexit so we should think positive, we survived before the EU and we will in the future

I think people were hoping for something better than mere survival, Maria, but, as you say, I expect we’ll manage if we all cooperate and make the best of the situation.

jeff says:
4 August 2016

The whole reason that we wanted to join the EU back in the days of Edward Heath was that our economy was on its knees. We had to go cap in hand to get in. For all its faults it has been a good safety blanket for us

It wasn`t the EU then it was the Common Market. We didn`t vote to be governed from Brussels & we didn`t vote to support all & sundry who`d contributed nothing to our country.

Leave only narrowly won the Referendum by less than 2% by an unprecendented volume of lies, distortions and irrelevencies – some of which they quickly said afterwards was incorrect! The Referendum was only advisory, Parliament should properly debate whether to leave the EU taking account of the appalling campaigns and what we now know of the consequences of Brexit. The value of my savings has in foreign exchange terms fallen by at least 10% since the Referendum and interest rates on my savings have been halved! Fuel prices are on their way up and other prices are following too with the foreign exchange movement against sterling and general loss of business confidence.

We understood a referendum to be a decision on whether to leave or stay. To suggest that because one group did not get their way, that decision should be nullified seems a curious way to see a democracy. Would we do the same at a general election?

Both sides behaved abysmally in portraying their cases. It was totally unprofessional.

I, personally, would have played safe, stayed in, and tried to influence the EU for the better. Having said that we always seemed to take a half-hearted and disagreeable stance with the EU; never a very good member of the “team”. So perhaps we are better off doing our own thing.

If you think that Teresa May will get rid of crony capitalism, you are living in cloud cuckoo land! She is a Tory! That’s where all their funding comes from!

Wrong on all accounts we had 40 years of lies from the EU, thank God for more than half the voters, smelling the coffee and getting out of the EU before it implodes and takes us with it.

Of course we will survive and grow free of the shackles of the EU. Brexit is the best thing that could happen to the country;

I think Project Fear also needs to acknowledge its share of ‘economy of truth’ in the lead-up to the referendum. I agree with Mr. Hughes that savings have definitely taken a hit following the ‘out’ vote (my few Lloyds bank shares are notably lower now in value!) although I paid £1.13p per litre for Tesco Momentum petrol (98 octane) today, whereas I remember it being pretty stable at £1.16p per litre in the months before the referendum so might it be a little of the ‘swings and roundabouts’ for a while as far as prices and various other elements of the UK economy go?

Malcolm B says:
5 August 2016

I agree totally with your thoughts and suggested actions re EU. But we are where we are now and need the best deal possible which I suspect might not suit some who want a complete break but a fantastic trade deal.

I do agree Jim, we had no choice but to vote out, if it had been kept as it was in the beginning it would have worked, just trade between countries, but it got out of control and as you say, we started being governed by Brussels, and the British people had only one choice to stop this, by voting out.

I think we all need to sit and see what sort of Brexit is negotiated and dont hold our breaths. I voted to stay and suspect that the deal with the EU is going to be a bit of a rum fish one way or another.

I agree with you. It is like being a child. If I don’t get my way then I am not playing. You cannot change a democratic vote. There were many lies on both sides. I would have preferred to remain. However, even though a small percentage voted Brexit it was a leave decision

Each member state appoints its elected MEPs to the European Parliament. The UK had 73 MEPs, elected in Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Why did they not table motions, agenda items, etc. and try to influence decisions? Some of them, e.g. Nigel Farage, were paid and not even attending most of the time?
We can’t hope to have any impact if we fail to act the right way, in the right place and at the right time.
I think that the peace across Europe and human rights protection work alone was worth paying the price for membership.

It is rather disconcerting, though, that a very large number of the “NO” voters voted for withdrawal of EU membership on the wrong understanding or not even knowing what the EU stood for! It is worrying when people’s decision is guided by what they want to hear than truth/facts.

Doesn’t a modern economy need capitalism? What creates jobs? When the state was trying to be the “businessman” and the “employer” they were constantly in debt, looking for loans from abroad and personal base income tax was 33%!!! Believing in socialism meant that I should have opposed privatisation of British Airways, electricity, etc. etc. But I can now say my bills are lower and competition has made British Airways and other transport so much more affordable and, therefore, accessible to a lot more people. We now pay ridiculously lower fares to all European and most other destinations than 20-30 years ago.

Fuel prices are lower only because the fuel prices went down in general, not because of Brexit. Had they not, with the exchange rate to the dollar taking a tumble, fuel prices would go up and they may still do.

Martha, a bit like a general election?

Perhaps a very large number of remain voters did the same though? I am more optimistic about the intelligence of we Brits to use our minds and think about things.

Totally agree, she had a chance to make a stand against cronyism and patronage by rebuking Cameron and his resignation honours list. But what did she do ? She looked the other way. For all the wonderful rhetoric I fear it is going to be business as usual spin, soundbytes and populist press releases and little else.

Totally agree Martin. I only mentioned the possibility of a debate in my local pub and the Brexit voters practically jumped down my throat. I didn’t say whether I was pro or anti Brexit but there was fierce rebuke to my merely mentioning the subject of any debate.

Steve T says:
5 August 2016

Although “Project Fear” was a very useful spin tool whereby there was no need to actually discuss issues as anything which was disagreed with was the “project” and as such could be dismissed out of hand. It is true that there were many issues which were not well formed but they were not discussed and that is part of the whole reason there is so much anger at the way things were run.

No, this is just the fall in the price of oil wholesale that has prompted the fall in the price at the pumps. Unfortunately, the fall in the value of the pound to the dollar – which oil is priced in – has yet to filter through. Once that happens, as the pound has dropped by over 20%, the price of petrol will go up by that amount, probably around October/November. So, by Xmas, should be around £1.30 again.
Likewise, ‘white’ goods and ‘home entertainment’ will probably follow suit in time for Xmas, as almost nothing like that is produced in the UK now. As the £ has dropped nearly 25% against the Euro we should see a similar rise, once again, in time for Xmas.
It was pretty obvious that the predicted ‘gloom and disaster’ from the Remain supporters wouldn’t happen over night but will be a drawn out process. Once Theresa does ‘push the button’ the pace of such things will increase as it gets nearer to the 2year marker.
After that………….

By the same logic you could say we fought a war before and won But did we without the allies we were sunk Europe offered a better future However we needed to stay in and work for change in its at times idiotic policy’s and fat cat Eurocrat MPs etc.

Perhaps a majority of those lies came from our own politicians so to blame the EU alone is wrong
I agree we joined a common market not a Federal Europe if the EU returned to that then I think all the members would be better off

Perhaps when you consider the actual percentage of the total of people who actually bothered to vote(most because they did not think it would be a leave vote) then it is less than 40% od eligible voters In such a serious cause and the now blatant misinformation revealed. We should have a second vote without any politicians spin and just the hard facts

Exactly Farage all mouth in the UK but collecting a huge salary but not actually doing anything in the EU assembly

I disagree with you completely! Yes the concept changed from the original Common Market and yes, Brussels did impose too many rules & regulations that were utter nonsense, but they also introduced stability, protection, workers rights and many more good things. However the vote to leave was a foolish one and this is being realised in our economy right now!
Prices are increasing, the pound has weakened (good for exports, but terrible for imports and money exchange and purchases in Europe), savings are more or less static, share prices have gone down, it looks like many essential immigrants (nurses, doctors etc), who have made their home here may have to leave unless they have been resident for 5 years or more, it is uncertain if Brits living abroad will have to leave their home in Europe, workers rights will no longer be protected after Article 50 is signed and the 2 year exit plan is initialised, and the government, including the Brexitors, are in disarray without a common plan to either negotiate decent exit conditions, or ensure trade agreements for the future.
Meanwhile stable companies are prepare plans to leave the UK, confidence in the marketplace and trade is at an all time low. The Bank of England has had to get involved to support the pound by reducing interest rates (great if you have a mortgage or a loan, but terrible if you have saved and planned for the future)!
We needed to stay ‘IN’ (and that’s the way we voted in Scotland), to fight for even better conditions and against some of the nonsensical decisions, while still getting the protections we had gained! Now we are in a wilderness, where our voice means nothing. And the EU are about to appoint a new Commissioner, who is anti UK, so our voice will mean even less, as it already does to the Germans!
I can only hope that a worthy plan is devised, that the marketplace stabilises and that future trade deals outwith the EU are negotiated!

Mark j says:
5 August 2016

Fuel was o its way up any way nothing to do with brexit, people always panic when there is uncertain times situations, some of the traders did well out of it spread it around the uk will remain so most people trading buy, then when the result came out they quickly sold making millions.

Mark j says:
5 August 2016


Mark j says:
5 August 2016

we where told at a UKIP meeting running up to the referendum that there was 72 votes against what the eu wanted and the uk got voted out on everyone, the eu knew we where holding a referendum when Cameron was negotiating but they never brought anything in, why? maybe they had no intention of giving the UK what we wanted.

derek says:
5 August 2016

it wasnt the eu but the common market for trade only ,not to be dictated to by the germans

We were conned then. It cost our fishermen dear. What at the moment has changed, only that we are going to leave so why the falls? Speculator activities! The pound was a little overvalued anyway. As a net contributor some of our money goes on Eu officials inflated salaries and pensions. We should save on that.

So true what Jim says this is the reason why I voted OUT we did not vote for a United States of Europe
We must now be positive and succeed
we must also ensure the result sticks and not vote till the stay supporters get the result they look for
Same applies to theLLabour leadership and independence of Scotland

72.2% of those eligible to vote did so, with just under 8% more voting for exit than remain. A lot more voters than a general election. What are the hard facts?

And don’t forget to mention that we like to be a crafty cherry pickers…..(a single market but nothing for to give back)…

Yesterday I heard two first-hand accounts of attacks on the property of foreigners resident in the Uk. The media has periodically reported on this post-Brexit phenomenon but it rather accentuates the issue when you know of some of the people involved.

Two months ago I was a proud to be part of a Britain which was tolerant, expansive, confident and largely respected around the world. Now, as epitomised by the intensive debate happening here I am part of a divided, inward-looking, self-interested society and one in which a xenophobic mob appears to have emerged and feels empowered to act like N***s.

Despite the evident, and apparently quite significant political and economic fallout from the vote for me Britains’ sudden reincarnation as a parochial, indecisive and intolerant country with no respect for the rights of others or our past commitments is the worst aspect of this questionable process.

I agree, Tony. Some rather despicable behaviour and attitudes have risen to the surface lately as if the Referendum result has given some licence and authority for extremism and intolerance. The goings-on in Germany in the early 1930 ‘s certainly come to mind, the difference here being that there is no one agitator or figurehead and it is running under its own momentum which is very worrying.

The impatience of many in urging our exit before due deliberation has occurred reinforces my impression that there is a lack of confidence in that camp so they wish to strike while the iron is hot.

I agree. The Brexit campaign managed to legitimise xenophobia.

I think the frustration is that having made decision by voting. and that David Cameron both resigned and said that article 50 could only be started after a new PM was elected, this envisaged to be 2-3 months. However, now that we have a new PM, I believe action should started. Negotiations can not be done working on suppositions of what both sides are likely want or dedli9ver. They need to be round the table now, and that is all 28 countries, not just the likes of France and Germany.

As much as some folk might like a quick seperation and new terms, I just wonder how many bits of legislation whatever need to be looked at and carried into UK law. I would not fancy the task of trying to find them all in a hurry and getting them through Parliament.

I disagree the UK has by far been a soft touch coming here to claim benefits or work in the black economy.Nigel Farage got voters of the sofa to vote he’s a voice that people will listen to he’s like the Brain Clough of politics like him or hate him he has put Britain 1st.Many small businesses will benefit from not having so much red tape.Think of our young on housing lists waiting years for a home for some Asylum family seekers to be accommodated in front of them by a left-wing council.it’s not a question of racism its numbers supply and demand;if we took in millions ask yourself about food prices they would rocket? and fuel prices would be the least of your worries;ok foreign holidays may cost more but would it not be better to start spending holidays in the UK ?many resorts cater for families now and you are not barred because you have children.If you want a cheap foreign holiday where you are not part of their culture you could get raped or killed by backward thinking idiots then it’s literally your funeral.

Sad to see such xenophobia rearing its ugly head in the UK I thought we were better than that.
We lost the respect of the World with this action. I s this not how “crystal nacht” started in N**i Germany

So in your opinion the rest of the world is full of raping backward thinking idiots?
Look around the streets of the UK on Friday and Saturday night or abroad in the resorts where most of the trouble is caused by raping backward thinking idiots commonly lknown as the British package holiday youth!

Still missing the point.
Asylum seekers are from NON EU Countries and their number will INCREASE with Britain dropping out of the EU. 2015 there were around 135,000 arrivals from the EU, around 160,000 from the rest of the world.
The red tape may be reduced, a lot of which is based around consumer protection (!) but the actual cost of exporting will increase as the EU (mainly France & Germany) will want to see the UK ‘punished’ for it’s attempt to de-stabilise the world’s largest trading block.
Even with the exchange rate drop it’s still cheaper to holiday abroad and the weather is almost guaranteed. As for the last sentence, I think it’s as likely for that to happen in the UK as abroad.

With you all the way ‘tonyt’. Racialism / xenophobia has gone mad all over Britain and it’s disgusting and very disappointing and is being flamed by an insensitive and uncaring press! I thought that we had made progress since the 19th century, but obviously not!
It looks like essential immigrants to our country, who contribute skills we don’t have and taxes to our economy (despite being labeled ‘scroungers’) are at risk of being deported if they have not been resident for 5 years or more!
This is the most appalling aspect of the decision, though I don’t want to minimise the economic future either!

Malcolm Moore, your post sounds like utter nonsense, insular and xenophobia to me! Farage and the Brexit decision have brought out the worst in Britain!
And it’s no excuse to say our young are being deprived of house…. they are asylum seekers fleeing for their lives for God sake, not economic immigrants!

beware the two faces of teresa may as we have voted for brexit the quicker we leave the better

I can see you must be aggrieved that when Michael Gove pushed Boris Johnson off his bike he then rode into the ditch himself. I think there is more integrity in Theresa May’s little finger than in all of the other contenders put together.

Stuart says:
5 August 2016

Better than the many faces of those who manufactured promises they could not deliver, and walked away once they had “won”.

I have to say that, naive as it might perhaps sound, I kind of have a smidgen more confidence in Theresa May’s integrity due to her being the daughter of a vicar! I can’t help feeling that 15-16 years’ of that kind of paternal influence on a child might be quite difficult to ‘exorcise’!

There are numerous and huge complex issues to resolve, and haste cannot possibly work in our favour when we are at such a weak and unplanned starting point. Haste could only work in the favour of those determined pro-Brexit voters who want want to ensure that we get out beyond the point of no return before the potentially disastrous reality of our actually triggering Article 50 sinks in to the majority UK consciousness.

YES, Brexit may cost us in the short run… but I hope/believe that it can also deliver an ultra-strong jolt of reality to the smug, self-interested and destructively complacent POLITICIANS and OBSCENELY POWERFUL RICH… in the UK and the EU.

Yes Ferris. It might be worth it in the long run so long as they don’t dodge the ricochets.

I voted for a Common market- not for a federal state. Democracy has not been strong in many parts of Europe. Taught to be obedient in religion, dissent is frowned upon – it is only by revolution that democracy came about. The Commission has too much power, giving made- up laws for the so called European Parliament to vote in or out. Parliament should be making the laws- NOT the commission. They make silly laws to prove their existence is necessary e.g. the silly one about Butcher blocks. There are many more.

I agree with John Ward when he mentioned the integrity of Theresa May. I just hope that she is able (eventually…) to put a stop to the pompous, avaricious antics of the House of Commons Speaker, John Bercow. His misuse of taxpayers money is not only abhorrent, it’s a perfect illustration of the corruption and arrogance which seems commonplace in the world of politics, in and out of the EU.
Brussels to Strasbourg every month… WHY???

What I cannot believe is that neither Brexit or Remain had an exit policy in place ,it beggars belief that Mr Cameron actually thought he was going to win ,tut tut politicians of today are so fickle as to think the British people are sheep and will do as they are told , that one backfired very very loudly , now we must get out of the EU as quickly as possible before we become bankrupted by the obscene amounts of money that the Bilderbergers keep demanding ,get our country back on its feet again ,I have said this before we are an Island we are not attached to Europe by land ,we are a strong Island race ,and if we all pull together we shall make our country great again thankyou all for reading my post X

It was certainly an odd situation whereby Remain didn’t expect to lose and Leave didn’t expect to win. In fact, with hindsight, it appears that the two sides made an absolute calamity of their preparations for the Referendum with far too much emphasis on personalities and nothing at all on practicalities. Given that the political timetable for holding the plebiscite still has another year left one wonders why all the hurry. There was clearly a lot of irresponsibility on both sides. Leave didn’t have an exit plan yet now demand action this day; and Remain didn’t really have a remain plan other than the piece of paper that David Ccameron had in his hand when he got off the plane from Brussels .

Remain largely meant the status quo, so nothing much to do. You cannot really plan “leave” as so much depends upon the negotiations with the EU and others, the state of the EU at the time and, of course, the world economy. So I think it would have been no more than a clueless paper exercise.

Thank goodness we got the referendum over and done with so quickly. i couldn’t stand another year if misinformation, desperation politics, uncertainty, from people who clearly had no good arguments to present – because there weren’t any.

What I still find incredulous is how out-of-touch Westminster MP’s had become with the British people that they somehow (albeit briefly) completely and absolutely lost control of the P.I.M. (the naval term for Position and Intended Movement) of the entire country/countries they were governing! Fascinating when you consider it.

John, it was the Government’s responsibility to come up with an Exit plan (it’s called contingency planning). The Brexit camp didn’t have the arm of the state / civil service to do this, only the government. And I say this as a ‘Bremainer’.

The total unpreparedness of both sides and how they intended to move forward speaks volumes with regard to the calibre of politicians we currently have in this country. For those who see a bright future going forward outside the EU , good luck because it is going to be needed.

What I find incredulous is that a sizeable portion of the electorate choose to punish Brussels for our Westminster MP’s being out of touch. There is little doubt that some saw the referendum as a chance to send politicians a message loud and clear. Sadly domestic politics and Westminster policies are the main cause of problems in this country and leaving the EU will not correct that situation.

You’re right BT. Neither side had a clue about what would happen next – and neither side even came up with Malcolm’s legitimate justification for not having an exit plan let alone how it would work. The government banned the civil service from even thinking about the possibility of leaving the EU. It seems to be fashionable these days to walk away from difficult situations as if that is honourable conduct. I voted to remain because I have always been in favour of European unity, mutuality, and cooperation but now that the country has determined its future I want to see it progressed properly and to our best advantage in all the circumstances. I feel that six months must the long stop for pulling the Article 50 lever; any longer than that and people would think we were incompetent or had lost our nerve.

Of course they didn’t have a plan. The government was in place and its job is to deliver whilst we the electorate watch and wait. Of course the pound fell. We aren’t exporting enough. Because companies and government haven’t bothered to train sufficient people for the skills necessary to add value. The migrant comes here earns, pays taxes, but some remit money home. A loss to the country?

I voted in 1975 to leave the then EEC and voted to leave the Eu in 2016, we did OK prior to the EEC and now have the opportunity to trade with the rest of the world free from EU shackles. All George Osborne’s bluster
of what would happen to the UK has not borne out. I believe now that this Government should put the British people’s interest first and not the rest of the world. We should spend money in Britain and not overseas aid, we should have a positive outlook in this country inside of people trying to run it down. Mrs Merkel has been very quiet since the referendum as she has problems in her own country. We now have a fantastic opportunity to do business with whoever we want without 27 other countries trying to shackle us.

The point of our departure from the EU was to break down the system of many rights (including those of consumers) in most cases hard-won over many decades. The ‘red tape’ so often criticised by certain sectors provided a real safety-net for workers in hazardous industries, small savers/investors and the environment of us all. The provision of cleaner water, safer beaches and more responsible hygiene in the food industry are just a few instances. We need to defend our standards vigorously, otherwise they will go the way of our jobs and industries – into the Third World.

Eileen, 17+ million voted to leave against the government’s wish. So who, exactly, wanted to “break down the system of many rights”. So I do not see this argument holding up. But maybe I’ve misunderstood.

I don’t think many of the Brexiters even gave that a thought! If I’ve heard it once, I heard it many times, that people wanted to give Cameron etc a bloody nose. Referenda on such an important issue is NOT the time to do this. That’s what bye-elections are for. What worries me most is that all the people who come to pick fruit and vegetables in East Anglia (they do a job and then go home again) will no longer be able to and if anyone thinks the Brits are going to do those jobs – dream on!! Therefore, growers will go bankrupt and we’ll have to import more food, which is ridiculous when we can grow so much of our own. It also means that the cost of food will go up. Is that really what the Brexiters imagined when they gave Cameron a bloody nose? I think not.

This comment was removed at the request of the user

Why will Brits not pick fruit and veg? They are quite capable of doing it. They used to. Is the benefits system too generous to persuade them to do this sort of work, or are the farmers not prepared to pay appropriate wages? We might have to tolerate a small price increase perhaps but if it puts Brits in work then why not?

Well said Eileen! Got it in one! There were many stupid rules & regulations, but many pearls too! I now worry what our government is going to do to us next!

hi there i have my own views i dont generally knock other peoples views i voted brexit because in my head i have never reckoned to become european ,my view is that it will take short to medium term for dust to settle but there will be more feeling and regret in europe because i think they wiil come off far worse than us ,.one job teresa may needs to address is the current head at boe and his aides and the people that form the committee to decide where money has to go ,interest rates that is if she wishes to address croniism then carney is a croney of draghee put a stamp on him and post him out of our way .interest rates re quire to be increased to build confidence in gb that in turn would bring foreign investment flowing steadily back into the country ,when i was working and required to borrow and it happened a lot i factored in the cost of money and played the situation knowing the facts .all this downward interest rate does is inspire bankers to lend wrecklessly and helps those that can, borrow far beyond their means and requirements she needs to give a lot of thought to people who have saved and hoped the interest would help to spare their budget,t he bankers dont care they dont have to watch the pennies ,they just put another nought at the end of their salary scale and they are fuelled for another period of time. well you showed a request for comment so thats some of my thoughts in the public domain .

Flawed surveys (only better or worse choices) give flawed results but they do help Which! promote Project Fear.
How about some optimism, after all Brexit hasnt actually happened yet. Personally I expect the economy to get better in the long term (5y+) and see little change in the short term (upto 2y), unless we talk ourselves into problems as we seem to be doing nicely.

Hello Anthony, thanks for your comment I’ll share your feedback with the team but I’d like to reassure that we’d like to know how people feel about the UK economy. Over the past month we’ve heard lots of differing views it would be useful for our work to know what our supporters think. I’d be more than happy to help with any further queries if you email me at conversation.comments@which.co.uk

I find it amazing that so many of those who voted Remain are still talking about a re-run of the vote because of the small majority in favour of leaving the EU. On many occasions in my lifetime the government has been elected by a minority of the population and yet people seem to accept that situation without asking for the general election to be re-run! Whether you voted Remain or Leave surely you must now get behind the decision and start looking for the positives (of which I believe there are many) rather than talking down the economy. The fact that George Osbourne gave away money in the Autumn Statement but seemed to reverse that in the March Budget suggests to me that he already knew the economy was faltering and yet every blip will now be blamed on Brexit.

I agree the railways need help (particularly Southern), but the greatest proposed spending (even greater than Hinckly) is on H2 which hardly anyone wants. Even the National Audit Office has condemned it. Several billion have already been spent, but the total £80,000,000 could be so much better spent elsewhere, i.e. the National Health Service. Something must be done.

HS2 has a budget of £50,000,000,000 love – you missed out a few noughts.

I am sick of hearing the economy is in meltdown, ask your selves why, Brexit is freedom, but we are listening to too many negative voices, the same ones prior to the referendum, spend as we were before and we should feel little of the dread we are being told about, the doubters are winning for all the wrong reasons, industry will find ways, so should we to support our brave economy.

K I Williamson says:
5 August 2016

Delaying the triggering of article 50 will is bound to affect our economy because uncertainty creates doubt. Once this is done we are a Nation that will make it benefit all of us. If the PM waits for Northern Ireland & Scotand the referendum will make a laughing stock of democracy.

We were told differing views, maybe a few lies, and perhaps one or two deliberately conjured up frighteners. Politicians , Business Groups, Bankers, you name it, they all had their say and yet still people are whinging and moaning because they didn’t get the result they THEY wanted. Well tough! Both sides share blame for lies and deceit, but what else do you expect from politicians? They all have their own agendas whichever side they were on. Now is the time to put heads together and make the best of what the future has to bring. We will come through this time and look back and realise that perhaps it should have happened sooner! Europe is falling to pieces, the various countries leaders aren’t coping with the immigration, and the EU policies are beginning to fail, and they have no answer to any of the problems. If negotiations had given Britain a better and much more sensible deal then this situation wouldn’t have occured, but the hardnosed idiots didn’t want to give anything away or it would have encouraged others. But the EU also ignores the wishes of people of other countries who want changes made. Eventually, they’ll realise the error of their ways and begin to understand just why we voted to leave. Even though the margin was small in percentage terms, it still stands and people need to accept that. The time for getting together and ensuring we have a good future outside of the EU is now. Forget petty differences, we need to forge ahead and make this country great again.
Oh, and as a footnote, all EU citizens here already, need to be assured of their right to stay, and soon. They shouldn’t be used as some kind of bargaining chip.

Having the dubious basic title of being an MP she, like all the others inherit the sub title of ‘liar’ which is evident by the complete absence of action in implementing ‘article 50 ad Brexit and allowing time for the House of Lords to dream up a legal means of preventing Brexit.
In the meantime the Labour Party provide a diversion in tearing itself apart in spit of the greater majority of its party members wish to support Corbyn. Democracy in both camps is held in contempt and the British public are slowly becoming aware of it.

My word, you do live in a gloomy world.

You write that ‘it is vital that Brexit delivers for all consumers’. That sounds a bit like wishing for heaven on earth but as a ‘consumer’ I think of what people have died for in the past and remember they gave their life for such values. Before 1993 when the Maastricht treaty was signed making us all agree to ‘open borders’ I was a trained nurse and teacher who travelled freely around Europe and worked in Greece when it still was under a military regime resisting Communism. I think I only showed my passport once or twice, so I don’t understand the fear and panic everyone seems to have today about ‘Brexit’. In the 48 years before Maastricht and even by the 28 years after the war before we joined the Common Market we were the world’s fifth largest economy and we still are despite most of our industries having been sold to people who are not British and based abroad. I just hope Teresa May can build up our steel, fishing and any industry based here by curbing foreign ownership of any of them.

alistair mclaren says:
5 August 2016

as long as we have greedy people in charge we will never get anywhere. sort them out, and we have a good chance.

You would think, from this Convo, that few people have the ability to read newspapers, listen to the news, think for themselves and actually come to a decision. You would conclude they relied totally on others to think for them and spoon-feed the answers.

If this is so then this country would be in a spiral of degeneration, whether we stayed or left the EU. I do not believe, however, that we are a nation of nummock brains. So I have an optimistic view and credit fellow citizens (well, most) with intelligence, curiosity, responsibility and the ability to think rationally – even if they reach a conclusion contrary to mine.

Someone mentioned talking down the UK. We have always been a bit of a self-deprecating nation and I suppose we always will be. But I do wish we would stop looking on the black side in public. It might not happen.