IMF calls for infrastructure investment to boost growth

Reports that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said there is a 'compelling' case for western countries to boost spending on infrastructure projects feature in today's newspaper round-up.

The Guardian reports that, in its half-yearly update on the state of the world economy, the IMF said western countries "should continue to provide stimulus, through a combination of ultra-low interest rates, the money creation process known as quantitative easing, and public spending on capital projects." The newspaper says that the IMF said that "the case for infrastructure investment seems compelling at a time of very low long-term interest rates. Investment is one way to enhance potential growth, but targeted structural reforms can also play an important positive role."

The Guardian also reports that the "scale of London’s property bubble is laid bare in a report that reveals how the capital has dramatically outstripped New York and every other major city in the world on prices and sales over the past five years." The newspaper says that, according to a report by estate agency Knight Frank, "in 2009, there were 2,147 sales of luxury houses and apartments in London in the $2m to $5m bracket, which put the city behind Hong Kong and roughly on a par with New York. But by 2014, sales in that price bracket in London had ballooned to 6,250 – double the number in Manhattan and triple the number in Hong Kong, Singapore and Sydney."

The Telegraph reports that flats "have been the property success story of the past decade in terms of price growth, with average values leaping by 60 per cent since 2005, compared with a typical 38 per cent rise for all homes, according to new data from the Halifax." The newspaper says the bank "found that a typical flat had £730 added to its value every month over this period, lifting the average price-tag from £145,800 in 2005 to £233,400 today."

A "charitable project that has installed more than 1,000 solar panels on schools in England and Wales will close next summer if government proposals to cut support for renewable energy go ahead", the Guardian reports. The newspaper says that "campaigners said on Wednesday that the ‘solar schools’ project run by environmental charity 10:10 would become unsustainable under government proposals to dramatically cut the feed-in tariff for householders and communities who install solar panels on rooftops."

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