Michael Simmons

Sunak’s debt target is slipping out of reach

21 June 2023 6:55 pm

Threadneedle Street will have all the economic limelight this week as the Bank of England sets interest rates tomorrow. With…

Record pay deals will worry the Bank of England

13 June 2023 7:24 pm

Wages are slowly closing the gap with inflation, up 7.2 per cent in the year to April versus inflation of…

Britain’s economy is struggling with so many off sick

16 May 2023 7:33 pm

One of the UK’s biggest economic problems is having so many people out of work – and the slowest return…

Ten yardsticks to judge Humza Yousaf by as first minister

28 March 2023 1:11 am

Humza Yousaf is the new leader of the SNP and in the coming days will be sworn in at the…

Did Scotland’s minimum alcohol pricing work? A look at the data

24 March 2023 7:15 pm

As Nicola Sturgeon prepares to exit stage right, she’s been reeling off her greatest hits. Things she thinks she’s done…

The Budget in twelve graphs

16 March 2023 3:42 am

Jeremy Hunt has just delivered his second Budget as Chancellor. The top message the Chancellor wants to push is that…

Sweden, Covid and ‘excess deaths’: a look at the data

11 March 2023 4:15 am

Pandemics kill people in two ways, said Chris Whitty at the start of the Covid outbreak: directly and indirectly, via…

Scotland will have a new leader on 27 March

17 February 2023 5:45 pm

So now we know: Scotland will get its new leader on 27 March. The rules that will determine how Sturgeon’s…

Nicola Sturgeon’s legacy in six graphs

15 February 2023 9:32 pm

Nicola Sturgeon is expected to resign in a press conference later this morning, after eight years as First Minister. She…

Why the rising unemployment rate might not be such bad news

13 December 2022 11:51 pm

Is unemployment beginning to bite? Or are the workless trying to rejoin the economy? That’s the key question after the…

House prices fall (again) – but is it the time to buy?

1 December 2022 8:58 pm

House prices have fallen for the second month in a row, according to Nationwide – following wider predictions of a…

Why are excess deaths higher now than during Covid?

5 November 2022 7:00 pm

More people are dying every week than during Covid’s peak years. Last month there were 1,564 more deaths than average…

The metrics that will decide the next PM’s fate

21 October 2022 2:27 am

Gone in a flash, Liz Truss becomes the shortest serving prime minister in British history. As it stands, she’s 75…

Six graphs that could seal Liz Truss's fate

14 October 2022 6:09 pm

When Britain crashed out of the European exchange rate mechanism on Black Wednesday, prime minister John Major phoned the Sun…

More Britons than ever are out of work due to long-term sickness

11 October 2022 9:23 pm

Some nine million working-age people are out of work and are not looking for it either. Figures released by the…

The barcode revolution

8 October 2022 9:00 am

Beep-bop. The sound of the supermarket checkout – a noise Morrisons felt the need to mute after the Queen’s death…

How likely are the lights to go out this winter?

7 October 2022 2:09 am

Britain will make it through the winter without the lights going out. That’s the view of the National Grid, which is…

Why life expectancy is going down in Scotland

22 September 2022 9:17 pm

Life expectancy is perhaps the surest sign of a country’s welfare, which makes it all the more worrying that Scotland’s…

Is long Covid all in the mind?

8 September 2022 1:15 am

What’s the link between long Covid and mental health? A study just published in the Journal of the American Medical…

US lockdowns wipe out decades of maths and reading progress

2 September 2022 3:29 am

In Britain, the damage of lockdown was easily covered up by grade inflation: with 45 per cent of A Level…

We’re at pandemic levels of death. Why is no one talking about it?

23 August 2022 9:10 pm

At the peak of the lockdowns, thousands were dying every week. Newspaper front pages demanded action. But in the latest…

Has Sadiq Khan's junk food ad ban really stopped London getting fatter?

3 August 2022 9:00 pm

London Mayor Sadiq Khan made a bold claim this week: ‘As a result of our junk food advertising ban on…

Scotland's drug deaths scandal is a problem no one seems able to solve

28 July 2022 8:42 pm

Scotland has a high amount of drugs deaths. But it’s not just that. It’s that Scotland suffers drugs deaths at levels…

Are masks bad for you?

22 July 2022 8:01 pm

Could masks be making us sick? That’s the suggestion in a Japanese study, published this week in Nature’s Scientific Report’s…

Boris’s premiership in seven graphs

7 July 2022 6:50 pm

Boris Johnson has just resigned – forced out by the sheer number of resignations, leaving him without a government. He…