The Secret Team who make UK housing policy

James Armstrong james36armstrong at
Wed May 14 10:29:32 BST 2008

 My research has shown  that housing  policy, both macro and detailed  has been made at the monetary policy committee of the bank of england with a little help from the Treasury.
It is not too much to say that housing, specifically housing debt is at the heart of economic policy. 
It looms bigger than manufacturing, employment, balance of payment, sterling value (or devaluation), money supply, and perhaps on a par with the fiscal (tax) system, because it is the biggest tool or lever available to Ministers at teh Treasury to manipulate the wider economy.  
The gov of the  B of E , and Kate Barker and  the people (see  below) , led by prof stephen nickell of nuffield coll oxford say so explicitly.
Dont bother to ask where does the housing minister come in on housing policy because the answer is Who?  Who is currently keeping the Minister's seat warm at the  Housing Ministry? No she is just the janey come lately occupant of the  seat and spokesman for the Treasury.
Rather put two and two together
Why was the longest serving external member of the  MPC asked to prepare the  the biggest policy document on housing since the 1947 T & C Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act?
 I refer to Kate Barker and the  Barker Review of housing supply. 
It explains her otherwise bizarre introduction to that report before she even investigated the (non)  market for housing.
"zero price  increase for  housing is neither achievable nor desirable"
The press announcment below reveals the  team.
Will any ferrets out there please let me know of any meetings. papers, F o I info on the work of these people?
The Regional Spatial Strategy  is one of their bright ideas
This week's news item that Yvette Cooper or was it Caroline Flint was seen with a briefing  paper under her arm which  advised her that the house prices were likley to fall between 4% and 10% in the coming year leads me to ask -
Was the good professor and the  NPHAunit the authors of that  paper?
You read it here first!
I will be delving further.
read on -

New National Housing and Planning Advice Unit.

A National Housing and Planning Advice Unit has been established by the Government to provide independent advice on improving housing market affordability.
The National Housing and Planning Advice Unit (NHPAU) will help strengthen the housing market evidence base and analysis currently available to the regional planning bodies. This will help to ensure that new homes identified in regional plans have a positive impact in improving housing affordability.   
Also announced today are the Board members.They are: Stephen Nickell (Chair), Professor Glen Bramley, Bob Lane, Professor Paul Cheshire, Dr Peter Williams and Max Steinberg.  The Board took up its role from 1 November 2006 and the appointments are for 3 years.
Housing and Planning Minister Yvette Cooper said: “The new unit will have a key role in offering advice and support to the regions in their work to ensure that new homes improve housing affordability. The board members have an impressive calibre and a wide range of expertise in housing and economics which they will use to steer the work of the unit.”
The NHPAU has been set up in response to one of the key recommendations in Kate Barker’s Review of Housing Supply, which found that during the last 30 years of the twentieth century housebuilding rates halved whereas demand for new homes increased by a third. This has led to a shortage of homes in some areas and corresponding increase in house prices.
The Board appointments have been made in accordance with the Code of Practice of the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments.
© CLG Communities News 
: Island Pulse News : November 8th, 2006 at 6:00 am.
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