David Smith's picture
Affiliation: 
Sunday Times
Credentials: 
Economics editor

Voting history

Devolving Income Tax Powers within the UK

Question 1: Do you agree that the economic benefits of devolving full income tax powers to the Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly outweigh the possible costs?

Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
My concern is that this would be the start of a process which would make co-ordination of fiscal policy within the UK more difficult.

Secular Stagnation

Question 2: Do you think that current structural and fiscal policies should place a considerably greater emphasis on pushing the natural rate into positive territory?

Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
I am not convinced that the natural rate of interest is in negative territory, so no.

Question 1: Do you agree- making your own definition of secular stagnation clear if you disagree with that offered here- that it is more likely than not that the advanced Western economies have entered into a period of secular stagnation?

Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Very confident
Comment:
There is an argument for secular stagnation in parts of the eurozone and Japan - even after Abenomics - , but not more generally.

Migration and the UK economy August 2014

Question 2: Do you agree that current government policies with respect to non-EU migration (including policies on students, skilled workers, and family migration) are effective in maximizing the gains to the economy from migration while minimizing any possible negative impact to specific groups?

Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
Government policy on non-EU migration has had a detrimental effect, if only at the margin, on the ability of business to attract the skilled workers it needs and universities to attract the best students.

Question 1: Do you agree that migration to the UK can be expected to be beneficial for the average income of current UK inhabitants in the upcoming decade?

Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
Over the very long term, immigration should boost per capita GDP. At the moment, however, we appear to be in a period when immigration has squeezed the incomes of lower-paid workers, and thus helped restrict the rise in median incomes.

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