Showing posts with label wealth. Show all posts
Showing posts with label wealth. Show all posts

Monday, April 22, 2013

The Scottish Capitalist Class get 58% Richer

This year’s Sunday Times UK rich list, which includes a total of 78 people from Scotland in its top 1,000, the most to feature in a decade. There are now six billionaires from north of the Border on the list, one more than in 2012. £21bn of wealth has been accrued by the top 100 millionaires.

Scotland’s rich are getting richer as the rest of Scots continues to struggle economically. The most affluent Scots saw their personal wealth soar by up to 58 per cent.

Highland Spring owner Mahdi al-Tajir is still Scotland’s richest man, and the 44th wealthiest in the UK, now boasting a fortune of £1,656 million up £56 million on 2012.

Banffshire distiller William Grant remain in second place on the list with family wealth totalling £1,400 million.

Sir Ian Wood’s, former chairman of Aberdeen-based Wood group, personal wealth now stands at £1,200m.

Ian Coxon, the rich list editor, said: “The 2013 rich list shows that business is booming in Scotland from Aberdeen to Ayr.”

Yup, capitalism is okay for some while we all face rising bills and less income to pay them.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Facts of the Day

How many people know that out of 150 countries, the United States have the fourth-highest wealth disparity? Only Zimbabwe, Namibia and Switzerland are worse. 93% of financial wealth is owned by the richest 20% of Americans.

The richest 1% have doubled their share of America's income in 30 years. From 1980 to 2006, the richest 1% actually tripled their share of after-tax income.

Only 4% of those raised in the bottom fifth make it to the top fifth as adults. Only about 20 percent even make it to the top half. 80% of black children who started in or near the top half of U.S. income levels experienced downward mobility later in life.

According to UNICEF, among industrialized countries only Romania has a higher child poverty rate than the United States. Just in the last 10 years the number of impoverished American children increased by 30%. While 12 percent of white children live in poverty, 35% of Hispanic children and 39% of black children start their lives below the poverty line.

 For every dollar of non-home wealth owned by white families, people of color have only 1 cent. Median wealth for a single white woman is over $40,000. For black and Hispanic women it is a little over $100.

Monday, April 02, 2012

Britain's '101 Wealthiest Asians 2012'

LN Mittal and his family continue to head the list at £13.5 billion.

The Hindujas, whose activities span from transport to oil, have seen their fortune improve further with a wealth of £9.5 billion during the year, up by £ 500 million, are second in the list.

Anil Agarwal chairman of Vedanta Group is third in the list with a fortune of £3.2 billion

Lord Swraj Paul chairman of Caparo and Chancellor of Westminster and Wolverhampton Universities is 7th in the list with a wealth of £675 million, up by £75 million from 201

Saturday, May 28, 2011

all at sea

How the other half live and more accurately how the 0.00002 per cent live. CRN Spa, builders of mega-yachts, estimates that there are just 1,500 people in the world wealthy enough to consider buying a boat from them. ( there is also, of course, the "ultra-mega yachts" of the type recently purchased by the Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, the world's biggest, featuring two helipads and a submersible escape submarine.)

"I know the names of all our clients," says the boatyard's chairman, "They're not famous people. You won't have heard of them." But, chances are, in one way or another, money that was once in your bank account is now in theirs'.

A few years ago an American client arrived and had signed a contract to buy a 43-metre yacht within two hours, with a price tag of €25m (£21.6m). He had never owned a boat before. "He told us: 'The interiors, the colours, the finishes, I don't care. The only thing I care about is the safety of my dog, as the boat is a present for her.'" On boats you have big holes, big gaps, big open spaces where a dog might fall. In the end he spent over a million euros having the holes closed over with glass and netting.

One wife of an Eastern European gentlemen, apparently, spent €3.5m on Swarovski crystals, which were attached to everything. In the finished vessel, the great chandelier in the main dining room matched the flip-flops worn by guests. She also requested a real wood fire, right next to a silk and cashmere carpet that cost €750 per square metre.
One of CRN's yach
ts, Maraya, has been chartered several times by P Diddy (with an estimated wealth of only $475m, or £288m, he doesn't quite make the 1,500), at a cost of €400,000 a week.

1. 'Eclipse' 557ft Roman Abramovich Features a missile-detection system and a laser shield to hinder the paparazzi's cameras. It also holds the distinction of being the world's largest.
2. 'Dubai' 532ft Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum This floating palace has seven decks, with jacuzzis and a mosaic swimming pool. It can also support a nine-tonne helicopter.
3. 'Al Said' 508ft Qaboos bin Said al Said The Sultan of Oman's yacht has a heli-pad, a cinema and a concert hall which can accommodate a 50-strong orchestra.
4. 'Prince Abdulaziz' 482ft Saudi Royal Family The world's largest and most expensive yacht when it was built in 1984. Its luxurious lobby was inspired by that of the doomed Titanic ocean liner

Monday, May 16, 2011


The Guardian columnist describes what is called "funemployment"

Workshy, embracing unemployment as a lifestyle choice, sometimes one inherited from the parents, and spending money scrounged off others on booze and drugs. No, not the feckless "chav" caricatures who regularly feature in tabloid horror stories, used to justify further attacks on Britain's besieged welfare state. It's a new generation of young, wealthy freeloaders - the "funemployed".

It might seem perverse to associate fun with the trauma of unemployment. Around 2.5 million Britons are officially without work; youth unemployment is currently running at over 20%. But in a society where Jobseekers Allowance is just £67.50 – among the lowest of comparable western European nations – it's a right that only a small elite can meaningfully exercise. While most Britons are suffering the biggest squeeze on living standards for nearly a century, there is plenty of money around for the uber-wealthy to splash out on their kids. The wealth of the top 1,000 people went up by nearly a fifth in the last year.

Public, an exclusive Chelsea nightclub set up by Prince William's best friend Guy Pelly, has only been open for five months, but more than a hundred residents and businesses have called for it to be closed because of the disorderly behaviour of its privileged clientele: noisiness, vomiting and used condoms left littering the streets.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

shooting estates rise

The multimillion-pound Scottish sporting estate market has had an extremely successful year in an otherwise relatively static property market, according to an estate agent.

The average size of estate has increased from 3700 acres to 4467 acres and the average sale price has increased from £.2.6 million to £3.5 million. Offers have risen from an average of 2% over the asking price to 6% over the asking price.

Robert McCulloch, an associate in the Edinburgh office of estate agents Strutt & Parker who specialises in the sale of farms and estates, said: “In short, despite the pessimism which inevitably accompanies the present ‘age of austerity’, the Scottish sporting estate market is in good health and appears set to remain so.”

Okay for some , eh?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Hong Kong Dream

Mr Li says he is growing increasingly uneasy about the widening gap between rich and poor in Hong Kong.
According to a recent Gini co-efficient - a measure that gauges the divide between rich and poor - the gap between the haves and have nots in Hong Kong is the widest in the world. Mr Li says the divide has the potential to hit Hong Kong's competitiveness and social stability.
"If achieving the Hong Kong dream becomes a vanishing hope, then our society will suffer. What would the Hong Kong dream be? It's no different from the American dream whereby an everyday man on the street who works hard, would be able to make good savings and use those savings as equity for their future small business," he explains.

Mr Li is the younger son of Li ka-Shing, Asia's wealthiest man and started by building a media empire with a multi-million dollar investment from his father. His father indirectly bailed him out of a tangled financial transaction involving attempts to sell his stake in PCCW in 2006.

Dubbed "Superboy" by the Hong Kong press for being the son of "Superman" Li .

Yup , a little bit of hard work , and save a little and you too can become a billionaire - just as long as your father is a billionaire and gives you a helping hand of a few million , eh ? Super.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Indian wealth

According to the BBC , UK developers are heading to India in search of wealthy new customers for their luxury flats. But why would anyone invest in London's wobbly property markets? Because the super-rich still have plenty of cash to spend.

One of the world's most expensive homes is currently being built in Mumbai for Reliance head Mukesh Ambani. His personal skyscraper will boast six storeys just for parking cars, and is expected to cost nearly $2 billion by the time it is complete.

Nick Candy, one half of the design and development firm Candy & Candy, is in Mumbai to drum up interest for his own super-luxury project, One Hyde Park. The central London project is offering apartments - to the right kind of customer - for an average of £20m. Mr Candy is a man used to dealing with the fabulously rich. But he says, "I'm flabbergasted by the amount of wealth in India. It's staggering."
Candy & Candy specialises in strictly top-end property. Its customer base is a roll-call of the super rich: royals, entrepreneurs, private company bosses. It's now looking to open an office in India. India now has more billionaires than any other country in Asia - 36 at the last count. Together they are worth nearly $200bn. India's top three richest people are all successful businessmen, but have made their money in old-economy industries, such as oil and property.
And while they have thrived in India's new economy, they have all built their wealth on fortunes inherited from their parents.

Many of those super-rich are now keen to invest their wealth around the globe. But why would Indian investors want to put money into London's property market now the boom is over?
"It's going to be very tough in America, and I think the UK will probably mirror it six months later," admits Mr Candy. But, he says, this applies only to properties under £2m where buyers need to borrow the money. There, you can expect "serious reductions in prices", according to Mr Candy - "and you're looking at a lot more than 10%." For top-end property - costing more than £5m - he thinks prices will be stable. There are not many people who can afford that level of luxury - and in London, there are still very few properties for them to buy.

Besides, says Mr Candy, "they've still got huge amounts of wealth. Maybe it's come down from $1bn to $500m - or if they've been very unlucky, it's $50m. But it's still huge amounts of wealth."

And of course they are the economic migrants that the government want .

Friday, January 18, 2008

The Gap Widens ( 4 )

And From the BBC

The rapidly rising incomes of the richest 10% of the population are the major factor contributing to growing inequality in Britain.
According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), an independent think tank, the incomes of the top 10% have risen faster than those of the population as a whole since Labour came to power in 1997. And that increase has been particularly concentrated at the very top of the income distribution - among the half million individuals in the top 1% of the income scale.
Between the 1996-97 tax year and 2004-05, the income of the richest 1% grew at an annual rate of 3.1%, compared to 2.3% for the population as a whole, and the income of the top 0.1% grew by 4.4%. The stock market boom has boosted the income of the rich
The growth was particularly strong in the Labour's first term, where the income of the super-rich grew by 8% per year. The IFS suggests that the rising stock market between 2005 and 2007 may have further boosted the income of the rich - a view confirmed by the 20% increase in the wealth of those in the Sunday Times rich list in 2007.

In contrast, those at the bottom of the income distribution - and especially the poorest 15% of households - saw their income go up at below-average rates, and in some cases even fell.

"It seems there are two interesting phenomena, at either end of the income scale, that are driving trends in overall income inequality" said IFS's Mike Brewer
Overall, the gap between the bottom 10% and the top 10% has widened. The top 10% of individuals in the UK now receive 40% of all personal income, while the bottom 90% receive 60%. The top 0.1% get 4.3% of all income - the highest figure in the UK since the 1930s, and three times as much as they received as a share of income in 1979.

The report says that "income inequality is at its highest level since the late 1940s".

The average income of the top tenth, of £49,950, was double the average income of all taxpayers (£24,769) and triple that of all households (£15,000), one-third of whom pay no tax.
To get into the top 1%, an individual needed an income of £100,000, and to get into the top 0.1%, £350,000. The average income of £155,000, while the top 0.1% of taxpayers had an average income of £780,000.

Male: 90%
Middle-aged: 80%
Live in London/SE: 70%
Work in finance, property, accountancy, law: 60%
Average income: £785,000
Source: IFS, top 0.1% of GB taxpayers, 2004/5

Friday, November 30, 2007

The Super-Star Super-Rich

A report by the BBC on those super rich super-stars .

England captain Bobby Moore lifted the World Cup in 1966 he earned £100 a week. Today's England captain, John Terry, holds the same position, but reportedly earns over £130,000 a week. David Beckham earned over £11 million from endorsements alone last year.

Then there are humble cooks like Gordon Ramsay , wealth of nearly £70 million , James Oliver , almost £60 million .

Superstars are boosting the luxury goods market, with worldwide sales in the sector topping £75 billion last year. Its all Aston Martins and private jets .

Naturally , the apologists of this insane distribution of riches claim that there are the benefits of the "trickle-down effect " but other commentators are more observant .

"Although these are people who will clearly have significant interests here in the UK and invest here in the UK, they're also looking to place their money around the world," said Mr Charrington , head of Citi's UK private banking arm , adding that the super-rich are looking for opportunities in China, India and Latin America "whether that be in private equity or hedge fund businesses. "

The BBC Money Programme produced a few interesting facts . 1% of the British population controls nearly 25% of the wealth. The top 10% in the UK having nearly 7 times the disposable income of the bottom 10%, up from only 3 times in the mid 1970s.( In the US, for example, 1% of the population control almost 40% of wealth and 20% of income.)

The lowering of the top rate of UK income tax from 98% to 40% in that time, with businessmen and women now able to turn income into capital gains paying a special low rate of 10%, has also widened the gap between after tax pay of high and low earners. For many foreign-born super stars, London is a tax haven, with non-domicile status meaning that they don’t have to pay UK tax at all – apart from council tax.

Monday, November 19, 2007

All at sea

"I want to create my own monument," the 60-year-old Italian entrepreneur says as he gazes across the sprawling ship building yard . Mr Vitelli has chosen a relatively modest yacht; a 103 feet long Azimut sports yacht, with a list price of 7 million euros ($10m or £5m). Modest, that is, compared with some of the other yachts sold by Azimut-Benetti Group. As one of the world's biggest players in the fast-growing market for hyper-luxurious motor-yachts, its multi-storey crafts can cost as much as $50m (£25m) and stretch from 24 metres to 85 metres in length.

Some of the world's wealthiest people will travel here to commission their own life monuments . In the year to September, the group built 800m-euros worth of yachts for the world's super-rich. And with an order book worth more than 1.5 billion euros, at a time when the global yacht market is growing steadily at some 10-15% per year.

In order to get the super-rich's attention, Azimut-Benetti's well-heeled customers are also occasionally invited to lavish events, such as this summer's yachting gala, complete with concerts and live shows.
"We don't charge," Mr Vitelli says, though the company tends to get its money's worth. "Generally, they leave a cheque for a new boat,"

All we at Socialist Courier can say is - "Come in Number 5. Your time is up "

Friday, November 16, 2007

Yuppie Blues

They were the generation with "loadsa money" .

But now the former 1980s yuppies are struggling to live within their means in middle age.

Almost half of the Young Urban Professionals of 20 years ago are finding it tough financially,
"Despite the champagne lifestyle and optimism of the time, our research reveals that many former high flyers have ended up no better off than the average mid-life family. They are just as worried about meeting the monthly bills, the cost of bringing up their kids and how they will fund their old age." - said the communications director at Liverpool Victoria friendly society

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

It is expensive being rich

It seems, it is the rich who have it hard. Luxury goods are rising in price three times faster than their more mundane consumer counterparts.

Robby Hilkowitz, executive director of the Stonehage Group which helps the world's super-wealthy manage their incomes said ;-
"Global wealth is growing at an unprecedented rate and as it increases they want more luxury goods to meet their lifestyle needs. With status items, the more expensive they become the more desirable they become..."

There are some 800 US dollar billionaires in the world, a figure that rose by 15 per cent last year. They are among the class of ultra-high net worth individuals with a personal fortune in excess of £25m of net investable assets. The second tier covered by the survey, so-called high worth individuals with more than £5m to spare, grew by 20 per cent.

* School Fees (Up 6.8 per cent)
With a history dating back to the time of Pope Alexander III, Westminster offers one of the most desirable old school ties around. One term's fees for two seniors cost £17,304 in 2007.
* Outdoor activities (Up 8.3 per cent)
Blasting away on the grouse moors of northern Britain was once the preserve of the landed gentry. Today any old hedge fund manager can have a go with a two-day shoot costing £3,600 in 2007.
* Vintage wines (Up 116.9 per cent)
Surely there can be no more famous wine than that emanating from the Rothschild's family vineyard in the Medoc? But three cases of Lafite Rothschild 2000 will set you back £9,250 this year.
* Exclusive facilities (Up 20 per cent)
Sweat with the best, or at least the richest, of them at The Dorchester Gym and Spa. A year's membership cost £1,800 in 2007.
* Luxury accessories (Up 26.7 per cent)
Patek Philippe once made watches for Queen Victoria and Tchaikovsky. The Swiss manufacturer could make one for you too. A limited edition Calatrava cost £19,000 in 2007.
* Football tickets (Up 25 per cent)
Chelsea FC remains the footballing choice of the west London glitterati . One season's executive box hire at Stamford Bridge cost £117,500 in 2007.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

someone with too much to even care much

It emerged that a 39-year-old hedge-fund tycoon took three months to collect his £80,000 Maserati Cambiocorsa after it was towed away for not having a valid tax disc.

Despite repeated calls from the DVLA to reach him Mr Des Pallieres said that he was "too busy" setting up a new business to fetch his car. " ..I only ever use the car in the summer and this summer I have hardly been in London."

Mr Des Pallieres left Deutsche Bank with two colleagues in April to set up his own company, the SPQR hedge fund. Now worth £170 million, his fund manages investments in debt markets. Yesterday, he claimed that the stress and workload involved in setting up his own firm were to blame for his forgetfulness.

Uh-huh , and i wonder how many of us could let our £80,000 car slip our mind - if of course we had such a car , in the first place .

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The trickle-down theory

The Crystal nightclub in London's West End made the news recently when one businessmen spent £105,000 in one night. The club's general manager says it is becoming more common for bills to reach these eye-watering figures. Many of Crystal's party-goers can be found in their suits and at their desks inside the glass skyscrapers of Canary Wharf. But is it actually good for London? "Yes," says Howard Wheeldon, a city analyst with BGC Partners based in Canary Wharf, "there's a massive trickle-down effect."

In the shadow of Canary Wharf's towers, a charity called Toynbee Hall is holding an open day for under-privileged East End kids. The children here - often from Somali or Bengali families - are among the poorest in the country.

Toynbee Hall's director, believes there is not much evidence of the "trickle-down effect" for them. I ask him if the rich and poor in the area ever mix. He tells me to go and sit in the designer shopping mall underneath Canary Wharf. "No matter how long sit there, you never see anybody from the Bengali community..."

"These are two worlds that occupy the same space, but never actually intersect."

The very rich and the very poor living together in the centre of the capital. Side by side - yet still in their own very separate worlds. The trickle-down theory is a euphemism for being pissed on by the rich .

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

For those who have too much

Royal Bank of Scotland has awarded millions of potentially lucrative share options to top executives under a controversial new bonus plan a report in The Herald says .

Chief executive Sir Fred Goodwin, head of corporate markets Johnny Cameron, and Larry Fish, head of US subsidiary Citizens, are among the major beneficiaries. The scheme could see executives including Goodwin gain three times their basic salary - which in his case would amount to £3.6 million. Goodwin was granted options over nearly 700,000 shares. Cameron was granted options over 374,332 shares and Fish over 523,640 shares. Finance director Guy Whittaker and retail markets chief Gordon Pell also received big awards.

RBS announced to the stock market yesterday that it had granted options to 15 senior executives which will vest between 2010 and 2017 at an exercise price of 561p, a level which some might view as low by recent standards. RBS shares closed up 1.5p at 577p last night, but were until recently trading well above £6. RBS did not respond to a request for comment on how it had arrived at the apparently low exercise price.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Keeping up with the Joneskys

A new conservatory ...some decking in the back garden ...perhaps an attic conversion to have an extra room for the kids ...well for some of us that will be a worth-while achievement , but for the capitalist class , its underground tennis courts and three story car parks .

The Times reports that with 15 bedrooms, vast entertaining suites and exquisite plasterwork, 15 Kensington Palace Gardens was one of the most expensive – and exclusive – houses ever to have changed hands in London when it was bought by Leonard Blavatnik, a Russian-born oil tycoon, for £41m in 2004. Yet all that opulence is clearly not enough for Blavatnik . According to plans submitted this summer to Kensington and Chelsea council, the tycoon, who has relocated to London, is seeking permission to excavate under the garden, to the front and rear of the sprawling pile, making space for a three-storey garage with car stacker, a swimming pool, a gym and a private home cinema.

Russian oligarchs, private-equity traders and hedge-fund managers are engaged in a multimillion-pound game of one-upmanship as they vie with each other to dig ever bigger, wider and deeper extensions. Behind the white stucco fronts and redbrick exteriors of Belgravia and Chelsea, London’s super-rich are digging down and building outwards and upwards .

The latest must-have feature is an adjustable-height swimming pool. At the flick of a button – because everything is remote-controlled – the bottom can be raised or lowered by a giant hydraulic jack, forming a deep swimming pool for the heavyweight millionaire or a toddler-friendly paddling pool for his offspring. Optional extras include a retractable glass roof or a discreet cover that will slide over the pool, creating a ballroom or banqueting hall. It doesn’t have to be modern or minimal – one house in Mayfair has a Roman-style pool, complete with columns.

“London is awash with money,” says Robin Ellis , known in the trade as “London’s poshest builder”, “Vast tracts of London are being dug up to create sub-basements,” he adds. “My clients are prepared to pay to create houses that push all the boundaries of luxury and technology. I’ve put in a swimming pool with a cover that rose, concertina-style, up and over the water to convert the space into a private concert hall, with seating for 100.”

It is all reminiscent of the mercantile extravagance of 15th-century Venice or the wild opulence of the reign of Louis XIV. London now has more billionaires then anywhere else in the world after New York and Moscow .

Few can compete with Chris Rokos, a secretive hedge-fund tycoon. The lavish plans for his eight-bedroom house in Notting Hill, submitted to the planners this month, include a gym, a home cinema, library, a third-floor open-air pool, an internal climbing wall, a subterranean garage with motorised lift for two cars and an 80ft-tall glass atrium. As if that’s not enough, Rokos, 36, plans to dig four storeys below ground to create a 16ft-deep swimming pool with high board.

“When they go round the houses of all of their mates who have done something, they want to do it better – money is no object,” says Jonathan Hewlett, head of London sales at Savills estate agency.

For example, Gibson Music, multi-audio specialists who have been hard-wiring homes for more than 20 years, have just put in £250,000 worth of technology by Creston, which specialises in top-of-the-range control systems. Other extravagant features recently demanded by clients include a vanity unit for 2,100 lipsticks; a glass-fronted, temperature-controlled wine cellar, complete with fibreoptic lighting and carved macassar ebony shelves, to hold 4,000 bottles; walk-in showers with waterproof television screens and glass walls that turn opaque with the press of a button, and cost £1,000 per square metre.

And there was some of us thinking we would be the bees knees with a 42-inch plasma screen tv , too

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Fancy a drink ?

The businessman's night out with friends started quietly enough with a £25 bottle of wine. It ended a few hours later with a bar bill for £105,805.
In between, the businessman and his circle of friends, which had swelled by closing time, had polished off 80 bottles of champagne, including a six-litre methuselah of Cristal worth £30,000 and a £9,600, three-litre jeroboam . The bill for champagne alone came to more than £80,000. One bottle of vodka cost £1,400.

The celebration took place at Crystal in Marylebone, central London, a nightclub launched with the help of Prince William and Prince Harry's friend Jacobi Anstruther-Gough-Calthorpe.
A favourite with the horsey set, its founding members include Lady Victoria Hervey and Tara Palmer-Tomkinson.

Consumed: one methuselah of Cristal (£30,000); two jeroboams of Cristal (£9,600), 36 bottles of Cristal (£12,960); six magnums of Dom Perignon (£4,200); 12 bottles of Dom Perignon Rose (£4,200); 15 bottles of Dom Perignon 1999 (£3,600), three magnums of Dom Perignon 1995 (£2,700) and four bottles of Cristal Rose (£2,400) and a nightcap of vodka, a Belvedere Methuselah, the equivalent of eight bottles.

I wonder if it was all tax deductable .

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

More on class divisions

The gap between rich and poor in the UK is as wide as it has been for forty years, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation has said in a report. Full report here

Since 1970, area rates of poverty and wealth in Britain have changed significantly. Britain is moving back towards levels of inequality in wealth and poverty last seen more than 40 years ago. Over the last 15 years, more households have become poor, but fewer are very poor. Even though there was less extreme poverty, the overall number of 'breadline poor' households increased – households where people live below the standard poverty line. This number has consistently been above 17 per cent, peaking at 27 per cent in 2001 . Already-wealthy areas have tended to become disproportionately wealthier.

There is evidence of increasing polarisation, where rich and poor now live further apart. In areas of some cities over half of all households are now breadline poor. Both poor and wealthy households have become more and more geographically segregated from the rest of society. 'Average' households (neither poor nor wealthy) have been diminishing in number and gradually disappearing from London and the south east. Poor, rich and average households became less and less likely to live next door to one another between 1970 and 2000. As both the poor and wealthy have become more and more clustered in different areas

While in another BBC report , the Centreforum research paper , Tackling Educational Inequality , wants the funds (£2.4 billion) schools in England get to teach pupils from disadvantaged homes to be doubled .

It said low attainment too often stemmed from children's backgrounds, not their abilities.

"Britain is a bastion of educational inequality," said Paul Marshall, chairman of Centreforum, an independent liberal think tank. "The die is cast at an early age and rather than recast the die, the English educational system tends steadily to reinforce the advantages of birth."

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Stagecoach Returns

Brian Souter of Stagecoach pocketed another £100m recently following the company's decision to return cash to investors is on his way to making another £1m. Souter was yesterday granted deferred bonuses worth nearly £800,000 at last night's closing share price of 182.75p. Souter had been granted 141,526 deferred shares under the 2005 executive participation plan with a paper value of £260,000. He also got 294,129 "incentive units" under the firm's long-term incentive plan.

Another beneficiary of awards granted yesterday was Martin Griffiths, the finance director. He got 70,677 deferred shares under the EPP, notionally worth more than £129,000, plus a 199,170 LTIP units worth nearly £365,000. These awards also vest in 2010. Four other executives, including rail chief Ian Dobbs and Les Warneford, managing director of Stagecoach UK Bus, were granted deferred shares under the EPP plan. Dobbs got 42,710 and Warneford 39,501.