News Brief: "The Happs" Oil leads market down, Banks collapse & Spain on the up
January 6, 2015
This is what entrepreneurs, small business and startups need to know in our world wrap up today!
Global: "Oil Drops - markets around the world suffer - what you need to know"
Spain: "Spain's recovery underway - what does small business think?"
United Kingdom: "Bank collapse in the UK leads to job losses
"Oil Drops - markets around the world suffer - what you need to know"
From the United States to Australia the markets are beginning to dive after earlier trading at peak levels and its all because of the drop in oil prices. The Dow plunged 330 points and oil fell below $50 while many European markets ended as much as 3.3% down. As trade opened in Australia the market was hammered with stocks losing more than $25 billion. In Australia the lower oil price has seen a lowering of petrol prices to consumers at the gas station which has made a lot of people happy over the peak Christmas travel break but in Russia panic is setting in as lower oil prices and sanctions because of the war in Ukraine begin to bite.
Concern is also in play in Venezuela where lower prices impact o government revenue which ultimately flows through the economy - this is after oil prices peaked in 2008 followed by dramatic drop during the financial crisis in 2008-09. According to market watcher Vox.com "By late 2014, world oil supply was on track to rise much higher than actual demand, as the chart below from the International Energy Agency shows. And, in September, prices started falling sharply."
and "The oil price crash is now upending the global economy, with ramifications for every country in the world. Low prices are excellent news for oil consumers in places like Japan or the US, where gasoline is the cheapest it's been in years. But it's a different story for nations reliant on oil sales. Russia's economy is facing a potential meltdown. Venezuela is facing serious unrest. Even better-prepared countries like Saudi Arabia could face heavy pressure if oil prices stay low."
"Bank collapse in the UK leads to job losses"
Even before the release of the official December retail trade figures news comes that more than 1,500 jobs are at risk with the collapse of high street retailer Bank. Deloitte have confirmed to EntreHub that a team of its people are now working with the business after being appointed administrators on Monday. The business has more than 80 stores mostly in the north of the country and Scotland. There is still hope that the business can be rescued with a spokesperson saying that administrators are trading as a going concern with a view to progressing these options and seeking further interested parties for some or all of the business,” and “All stores are open as normal, staff have been paid and additional sale discounts will be implemented later this week.”
Retail, in particular small business and family operated shops have suffered in recent years as the recession took hold. Figures released in December showed that people were not as confident with the economy as earlier suggested with many plan to save and pay down debt as opposed to spend.The retail trade figures are very eagerly awaited!
Message for small business retailers wherever you are? begin the planning process now for the busy peak sale periods and make sure your cash flow management plans are tight to survive the peaks and troughs.
"Spain's recovery underway - what does small business think?"
It looks like business and the economy in Spain are finally getting a boost with unemployment creeping down in the 12 months to December 31st, 2014. Data released this week shows that the jobless lines shrank by 253,627 over the period equating to a 5.39% drop. In fact some 1.3 million new employment contracts were signed in December with the majority of those being temporary. This is a trend across the EU where permanent roles are giving way to temporary employment and causal contract labor. For Spain the good news gets better with 2014 also seeing the economically troubled country creating work for the first time in 7 years. While there were still 5.43 million registered unemployed people in Spain at the end of September national average unemployment was still sitting at 23.67% - the highest of any developed nation in the world with concerns still resting on the higher than average youth unemployed.
EntreHubber Jose Cortez who runs a bar in central Madrid told EntreHub that he is seeing an upswing in people coming in and spending money: "Trading was tough in 2013 and it picked up slightly last year although we had to be careful in managing our labor costs which is the highest cost to the business. What we tried to do is employ people based on peak and trough times in the business during the day and also we shared our working pool with other small businesses which meant we could share the over all cost. That got us into thinking about how else we could save money and we clustered our procurement for shared goods to increase our purchase power and get better pricing"
Jose said he was optimistic about the future and while they had no intention of hiring more staff the big challenge was to maintain customer spending!
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