The Chancellors: Steering the British Economy in Crisis Times (Paperback)Howard Davies (author)
- In stock
When the Treasury lost control of interest rates to the Bank of England in 1997, its status looked under threat. However, it quickly reasserted its power by dominating policymaking across Whitehall and diminishing other ministries in the process. It also successfully fought off attempts by Prime Ministers, from Blair to Johnson, to cut it down to size.
In this fascinating insider account, based on in-depth interviews with the Chancellors and key senior officials, Howard Davies shows how the past twenty-five years have nonetheless been a roller-coaster ride for the Treasury. Heavily criticized for its response to the global financial crisis, and for the rigours of the austerity programme, it also ran into political controversy through its role in the Scottish referendum and the Brexit debate. The Treasury's dire predictions of the impact of Brexit have not been borne out. Redemption of a kind, though a costly one, came from its muscular response to the COVID crisis.
Anyone with an interest in economic policymaking, in the UK and elsewhere, will find this a valuable and entertaining account.
Publisher: Polity Press
Number of pages: 200
Weight: 338 g
Dimensions: 217 x 139 x 21 mm
'A thoughtful, gossipy and highly readable account of recent British economic history, Howard Davies's survey covers all the big Treasury issues and personalities of the past twenty-five years, with especially interesting insights on financial regulation and the Treasury's post-Brexit policy challenges.'
Ed Balls, former Education Secretary and Shadow Chancellor
'These are fascinating, personal assessments of the performance of our Chancellors by someone particularly well qualified to make them.'
Gus O'Donnell, former Cabinet Secretary and Permanent Secretary of HM Treasury
'Witty and essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the Treasury."
"Howard Davies has written a succinct and fascinating assessment of the Treasury's crucial role since 1997. How the department responds to the challenges of the future is likely to determine the UK's prospects for decades to come."
"A succinct and fascinating assessment of the Treasury's crucial role."
David Gauke, former Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
"This insider's view [...] manages to be both authoritative and quite cheeky."
Ferdinand Mount, The Spectator
"Davies is kinder to the Treasury than I would be. Nevertheless, he recognises that trouble lies ahead: political and economic realities do not look friendly to the belief in free markets and fiscal discipline that guides this powerful institution."
Martin Wolf, The Financial Times
"It's a "fascinating" story, covering many challenges and changes."
"informative and entertaining"
William A. Allen, The Society of Professional Economists
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