In the midst of an economic recession, business robberies are on the rise

For three months, British companies have been facing an unprecedented wave of thefts. Some Britons fear that this situation will worsen due to the lack of purchasing power, as a result of the economic recession that the United Kingdom is facing.

In the Stratford shopping center, east of London, there are many supermarkets and cafes near clothing, shoe and jewelry stores… It is possible here, as in other stores in the United Kingdom, for thefts to multiply, given that

Daniel Postico, Radio France Internationale's correspondent in London, questioned several customers to find out if they ever felt this insecurity:

“Especially on social networks you see many videos of thefts in stores and supermarkets.”

“I've noticed them staring, and I'm very careful. When they look at you it's because they want something.”

“They have put up more signs warning of pickpockets, and there are more security personnel, but the situation is more unsafe than it was two or three years ago.”

“There are also more phone thefts on the streets.”

The cost of living in London has risen dramatically, but is this the reason for the increase in theft? Do people steal because they don't have money? Which Questioned Buyers Answer:

“More people are arriving, more immigration. I am an immigrant, many of us work honestly, others take advantage of it.”

“I think it's the pandemic, it's mental health, it's not a lack of work because there's a lot here. “They're not ready to go back to work, they don't know how to move forward and they steal.”

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“It's a question of young people, small bands, making things easier, and I'm not going to mention any country, I don't want to sound racist or xenophobic, but the population here has increased and that's one of the reasons.”.

The UK has entered a recession

The UK economy contracted in the fourth quarter of 2023 for the second time in a row, meaning the country has entered a recession, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said on Thursday.

Britain's gross domestic product fell by 0.3% in the fourth quarter of last year, after falling by 0.1% in the third quarter, according to a statement from the Office for National Statistics.

High interest rates and inflation have put pressure on the economy of households and businesses, which in the middle of an election year complicates the Conservatives' mission to power.

Economists often consider two consecutive quarters of economic contraction to be the definition of a “technical” recession.

However, in 2023 as a whole, the UK continues to show slight growth of 0.1% year-on-year, after growth of 4.3% in 2022, the Office for National Statistics said.

The main reason for the recession was weak business results in December, in the middle of the Christmas season which is traditionally the busiest time of year for the sector, according to the Office for National Statistics.

In this way, the British economy enters a recession for the first time since 2020, when general isolation measures to combat the coronavirus pandemic affected economic activity for several months.

The Office for National Statistics indicates that the British economy is recording its worst performance since the 2009 crisis, with the exception of 2020.

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Treasurer Jeremy Hunt said: “Inflation is the biggest obstacle to growth, so halving it was our priority.”

The UK inflation rate is 4%, which is double the Bank of England's target, but has fallen from the 11% it reached in October 2022.

Hunt continued: “With interest rates rising – currently 5.25% – for the Bank of England to reduce inflation, weak growth is not surprising.”

The minister said, “But there are indications that the British economy has passed a difficult stage, and expectations speak of growth in the coming years.”

Economists underestimate the scope of this recession

“It is moderate and leading indicators indicate that it is already coming to an end,” economist Ruth Gregory of Capital Economics said in a statement.

But Gregory explained that “announcing that the United Kingdom will enter a technical recession in 2023 would be a blow to Conservative Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.”

The Labor Party currently enjoys a clear lead in opinion polls over the Conservative Party, which has ruled the country for about 14 years, before this year’s elections, for which a date has not yet been set.

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