Friday, 23 November 2012

The Future Jobs Fund: what a waste

The Department for Work and Pensions today published an analysis of the impacts and costs of the Future Jobs Fund.  The impact analysis was peer reviewed by Helen Bewley of NIESR; the methodology and approach is very similar to that used by DWP, and also peer reviewed by NIESR, in previous impact analyses of Work Experience and Mandatory Work Activity, and Helen's own research on reoffending for the Ministry of Justice.

The bottom line is that the impact of the Future Jobs Fund (FJF) on the chances of participants being employed and/or off benefit was substantial, significant and positive. 2 years after starting the progamme (so long after the programme itself had ended, so the participants were back in the open labour market), participants were 11 percentage points more likely to be in unsubsidised employment.  

Monday, 19 November 2012

The Treasury Committee, cont: "My concern is not the economics"

I, and my colleagues Angus Armstrong and Simon Kirby, gave evidence to the Treasury Committee on Tuesday November 13th. The full uncorrected transcript is now available. Or you can watch. My discussion of one specific economic issue - why are gilt yields so low - is here

However, I thought I would post in full my exchange with Jesse Norman MP.  [Note that the transcript below is uncorrected and that the final form of its publication has not yet been approved by the Committee, although it is accurate as far as I can tell.  On the video, it starts at about 10:35].

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Faith-based economics at the Treasury Committee

I, and my colleagues Angus Armstrong and Simon Kirby, gave evidence to the Treasury Committee on Tuesday November 13th.  Should you have time and inclination, you can watch. As you would expect, we covered a range of topics: the fiscal framework and fiscal policy, multipliers, the "productivity puzzle", etc.  However, I was rather surprised by the tone of the questioning on one topic: why are long term interest rates (gilt yields) so low?  

Monday, 12 November 2012

Illegal migrants: can't even get themselves arrested?

How many illegal immigrants are there in the UK? Unlike other such questions - how many 12 year olds are there in the UK? how many gay Jews? - where, although we don't know the exact answer, either survey and administrative data allows us to make an informed and reasonably accurate guess, we don't know, even approximately. But a new initiative by the Metropolitan Police suggests that the number may in fact be surprisingly low.