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Jubilee weekend: how will you spend it?
Opinions are divided over the economic effects of the extra day off on Tuesday, so Robert Lovell wants to find out how you plan on spending the extended weekend - and whether you think it will have a positive or negative effect on the economy.
While the controversy continues about how the Jubilee will will affect the economy, we thought an informal straw poll of AccountingWEB members' weekend plans could help us to extrapolate the economic consequences. What are you going to be doing over the long weekend, and do you think your Jubilee activities will make a net contribution or reduction to GDP?
On the plus side, there’s likely to be an uptake in booze, BBQ and shopping sales - as long as the weather stays fine. But will these indulgences make up for the estimated £2.3bn worth of lost output?
Or, with the London Olympics around the corner is all the fuss about this one-off celebration “absolute nonsense” as one AccountingWEB member noted?
Remember that even with the extra day, this year we will have just nine bank holidays - that still falls below the 10 to 12 that is the international norm.
Members were quick to vent their frustration on the topic, with some pointing out there was no "additional" day off because many business owners will still be at work. And the extra leap year day on 29 February cancels out the Jubilee holiday.
InflatableBassPlayer questioned one of the “five key opportunities” on the beneficial retail effects of buying British, since most of proceeds from Union flag-related sales are likely to end up in the Far East.
Another AccountingWEB argued that the Jubilee event will sell the “the pomp and circumstance of Britain” around the globe in a way that nothing else can.
Finally a couple of members asked where the clamour was from the Bank of England, economists and government to cancel the Christmas and New Year's Day holidays? Scrap the Jubilee, then why not Christmas too for the benefit of the economy?
The likely 12-day break in UK production over this period led another to conclude “I've cancelled Christmas”.
However, as John Kay concluded in a recent FT article about the Jubilee: “What really matters is whether the holiday, and the celebration, makes us better off. That question answers itself without need of economic statistics.”