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House prices bounce back to new all-time high, figures show

House prices bounce back to new all-time high, figures show

Business
House prices have reached a new record high after bouncing back from falls earlier this year with the biggest rise since 2004 last month, according to figures from Nationwide.Prices rose by 2% in August compared to the previous month or 3.7% compared to a year ago, adding to evidence of a rapid recovery after coronavirus lockdown restrictions were eased. The figures came as house builder Barratt Homes reported a 46% slump in profits to £492m for the year to the end of June, which it blamed on "unprecedented disruption to sales".But it said it was now seeing "very strong consumer demand", with forward sales in more recent weeks ahead of the same time last year.
Climate change: Removing CO2 could spark big rise in food prices

Climate change: Removing CO2 could spark big rise in food prices

Science
Technologies that can remove carbon dioxide from the air could have huge implications for future food prices, according to new research.Scientists say that machines that remove CO2 from the air will be needed to keep the rise in global temperatures in check.But these devices will have major impacts on energy, water and land use.By 2050, according to this new report, food crop prices could rise more than five-fold in some parts of the world. In the wake of the Paris climate agreement signed in 2015, researchers have tried to understand what keeping the world under a 1.5C temperature threshold would mean in practice.The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported on this question in 2018, and found that keeping below ...
Industry body warns of higher prices if UK cannot strike trade deal with EU

Industry body warns of higher prices if UK cannot strike trade deal with EU

Business
Consumers in the UK could face higher prices next year unless a tariff-free trade deal with the EU can be reached, the British Retail Consortium has warned.The UK and EU remain locked in talks on a free trade deal but there are concerns an agreement will not be struck before the UK leaves its transition period at the end of the year. The latest round of negotiations broke up early last week after both sides admitted they continue to disagree on a number of issues.Around 80% of food imports come from the EU and the bloc plays a big role in supply chains for other items such as clothing and homeware. ...
UK inflation rate at fresh four-year low as fuel prices slump

UK inflation rate at fresh four-year low as fuel prices slump

Business
A record fall in fuel prices, including petrol, pushed the UK's inflation rate down to 0.5% in May, the second full month of the coronavirus lockdown.Fuel prices declined by 16.7% during the month, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said, dragging the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) to the lowest level since June 2016.Clothing and footwear prices also fell.Supermarkets were among the few shops allowed to open in May and food prices rose, the ONS said. May's inflation rate was down from 0.8% in April, the first full month of the pandemic lockdown. Clothing and footwear prices fell 3.1% amid heavy discounting. What is inflation?Inflation is the rate at which the prices for goods and servi...
House prices see largest monthly fall for 11 years, says Nationwide

House prices see largest monthly fall for 11 years, says Nationwide

Business
House prices fell 1.7% in May from the previous month, the largest monthly fall for 11 years, according to the Nationwide.Annual house price growth halved from 3.7% to 1.8%, as the coronavirus crisis hit market activity.The latest HMRC data showed that residential property transactions fell 53% in April compared with 2019."The medium-term outlook for the housing market remains highly uncertain," the Nationwide warned."We have already seen a sharp economic contraction as a result of the necessary measures adopted to suppress the spread of the virus," said Robert Gardner, Nationwide's chief economist.But he pointed out that the raft of policies adopted to support the economy should "set the stage for a rebound once the shock passes" and help limit long-term...