What a wheeze, that Brown is a card isn't he. Turns out we aren't best placed at all and for the last decade he's turned our economy to rat-shit! You want proof? From the Times.
Fears that Britain is emerging more slowly from recession than other economies were stoked yesterday with figures showing that UK factory output dropped last month.
The figures came as similar data for the United States, China and France pointed to an expansion in manufacturing activity in those countries, while Germany’s factories were also highlighted as being in recovery mode.
Figures published by the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS) revealed that UK manufacturing activity, which had been expanding during the previous five months, contracted in August.
The CIPS/Markit survey of purchasing managers in manufacturing — where a reading above 50 indicates expansion and below 50 indicates contraction — fell from 50.8 in July to 49.7 in August. The July figures were revised downwards to 50.2.
Combined with disappointing lending data from the Bank of England, the surprisingly weak figures helped to send the FTSE 100 index down 89.20 points to 4,819.70. On currency markets, sterling was down against the dollar, with the pound trading later in the session at a six-week low of $1.6137.
Economists focused on the gloomy aspects of the survey, including confirmation that manufacturers were continuing to cut jobs. Colin Ellis, at Daiwa Securities, said: “These numbers are a reminder that the economy is nowhere near out of the woods yet.”
Elsewhere, hopes that the global economy is emerging from the worst recession since the Second World War were given new impetus with strong manufacturing data from both the US and China.
America’s factories have returned to growth for the first time in more than 18 months, while China’s giant manufacturing sector is growing at its fastest rate since the collapse of Lehman Brothers and the start of the global financial crisis a year ago.
French factories reported their first expansion in activity since May last year. German manufacturers also reported an improvement.
The figures from the US were seen as the most dramatic. The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) reported a reading of 52.9 for its manufacturing index in August, the first since January last year to exceed 50. The ISM said that new orders, new export orders and production had all risen.
Agreed US home sales, which have now risen for a record six consecutive months, rose in July to their highest level in two years.
But suspicions that the figures had already been priced into the market sent Wall Street sharply lower. The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 185.68 at 9,310.60 and the S&P 500 finished down 22.58 at 998.04.
In Shanghai, shares rose after Monday’s rout, as figures pointing to further expansion in Chinese manufacturing helped to calm nerves."