The next financial crash is coming. Which way will the world turn? | Damian McBride

I used to think a rerun of 2008 would undoubtedly benefit the anti-capitalist left. Now I’m not so sure

Five months ago this week, I invited some good-natured mockery by warning people that the only way to survive the looming economic crisis was to take a large notepad and go and watch The Revenant. We’d all be living in the wilderness soon enough, so it was time to learn how.

Well I didn’t go quite that far, but I did state my profound belief that this crash would be much worse than the 2008 banking crisis, and – given how close we came to the collapse of the financial system then – it’s a reasonable fear that we won’t get so lucky twice.

Related: George Osborne warns UK economy faces ‘cocktail of threats’

Related: George Osborne’s ‘cocktail of threats’ will leave us with a hangover | John McDonnell

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Richest 62 people as wealthy as half world’s population combined

Charity says only higher wages, crackdown on tax dodging and higher investment in public services can stop divide widening

The vast and growing gap between rich and poor has been laid bare in a new Oxfam report showing that the 62 richest billionaires own as much wealth as the poorer half of the world’s population.

Timed to coincide with this week’s gathering of many of the super-rich at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, the report calls for urgent action to deal with a trend showing that 1% of people own more wealth than the other 99% combined.

Related: Number of female billionaires increases sevenfold in 20 years

Related: Givers that keep on giving: the world’s top philanthropists

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Global economic turmoil to dominate Davos discussions

Business leaders and policymakers at the World Economic Forum will focus on Chinese downturn, a commodities rout and stock market turmoil

The fragility of the global economy will take centre-stage this week with the International Monetary Fund poised to warn of growing economic risks as business leaders and policymakers gather for the annual World Economic Forum in Davos.

The IMF will update its forecasts for global growth on Tuesday and is widely expected to paint a bleaker picture for the year ahead amid the deepening Chinese downturn, a commodities rout and turmoil on global stock markets.

Related: Why the falling oil price may not lead to boom

Global markets off $3.83 trillion, including U.S. $1.87 trillion (S&P 500 $1.41T) and non-U.S off $1.95 trillion

18 months ago a barrel of #oil bought you a bottle of Pol Roger 2004 champagne. Today it gets you Tesco Finest. pic.twitter.com/ROxaaTmW3H

We no longer expect #BankofEngland rate hike in May but we believe MPC may well act in Aug. Interest rates likely to end 2016 at just 0.75%

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Oil price woes deepen as Iran vows to add 500,000 barrels a day

Iranian president hails end of sanctions as western economies and companies such as Airbus stand to benefit

Global oil prices will remain under pressure this week after Iran said it was ready to add half a million barrels a day to crude exports just hours after international sanctions were lifted this weekend.

Iran’s president, Hassan Rouhani, hailed a “glorious victory” as his country relished reconnecting to the global economy following the formal announcement late on Saturday that sanctions were ending thanks to moves by Tehran to scale back its nuclear programme.

Related: Why the falling oil price may not lead to boom

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Why the falling oil price may not lead to boom

An economic boom usually follows a big drop in the oil price but this time maybe different – indicative not of oversupply but weakness in demand

There was a time when Blue Monday meant a song by New Order. These days it is the third Monday in January, allegedly the most depressing day of the year.

Whether there is any scientific basis for this claim is debatable, but for what it’s worth the argument is that people feel miserable because Christmas is over, the credit card bills are arriving, it’s dark when you go to work in the morning and it’s dark when you head home.

Related: Janet Yellen and Fed left with face full of egg after interest rate rise blunder

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Oil slump – the true cost of falling prices

Standard Chartered last week warned of oil at $10 a barrel. What impact would that have on North Sea oil, the consumer and the UK economy?

Up to 65,000 jobs have already been lost from the British offshore oil industry since the cost of crude fell from a peak of $115 per barrel in June 2014 to its latest level of $30. A further decline to $10 would clearly turn a cull into a massacre, not least because the North Sea is a high-cost place to operate, with the break-even price for many fields around $60.

Related: Saudi Aramco – the $10tn mystery at the heart of the Gulf state

Related: Spend, spend, spend – it’s what the chancellor is praying for

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Spend, spend, spend – it’s what the chancellor is praying for

Personal debt and the booming property market have become the main drivers of growth in Osborne’s economy

George Osborne has already put in place legislation to prevent future governments racking up more debt, but consumer borrowing? Well, that’s another matter. Consumers who spend all their wages and then a bit more on top are George Osborne’s best friend.

Figures last week from the Finance & Leasing Association (FLA) documents a 17% surge in new consumer borrowing during the year to November 2015. The data covered credit cards, store cards, car loans and the dreaded second mortgage, which was so popular that the value of new loans jumped 31% during the year.

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