Is recession just a state of mind? Well partly, as it all depends where you are, what you’re doing (or did, if you’ve lost your job) and on the effect whatever’s happening to ‘the economy’ has on you. Just as everyone has a personal inflation rate – for some, the price of a pint of milk, for others, spending £150 instead of £100 on a meal in a nice restaurant – it may be life-changing or recession-schmcession. In 1992, my job was to recruit new financial advisers, and I saw an endless trail of recently-redundant engineers and others desperate to save their homes from repossession. By the time of the next one, 2008/9, I was working with mostly-retired clients who were glad to be out of the workforce. With a government propping-up, rather than letting everything collapse, it all felt more positive than negative to someone like me who had just started their own business at the depths of the fall. Then, of course, came austerity. But I think we’ve learned that lesson. Haven’t we?
You might not have realised it, but ‘over the past four decades, wealth has soared across Britain’. And the sudden and big jump in interest rates in the past few months will have long-term effects, £2tn-worth, it’s thought.