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OXFORD OUTSTRIPS LONDON FOR UNAFFORDABLE HOMES

Financial Times, 26/02/2015, p. 4, Kate Allen

Oxford is the most unaffordable place to live in Britain, outstripping London, according to an analysis of housing market data and local wages. Average house prices in the city are now 16.1 times the local average annual income, research by Oxford University professor Danny Dorling has found —compared with 15.7 times in London. The average cost of a house in Oxford in 2014 was £426,720 according to the research, with the city’s workers earning on average £26,500 per year. In London the average house price was £501,520 while average wages were £31,950 per year. Other areas with house price to income ratios of more than 10 included Cambridge, Brighton, Milton Keynes and Reading. The figures are in a new edition of Mr Dorling’s book All That Is Solid, on Britain’s housing crisis, which argues that the current market is unsustainable. “Compared with earlier decades, house prices across the UK are extremely high when compared with the average take-home pay,” Mr Dorling said. “‘Fewer and fewer people are able to get a mortgage.”

Read more on The Financial Times website (opens new window)

SUNKEN CITY OF EGYPT FOUND

Oxford Times, 26/02/2015, p.29, Reg Little

Full page feature on the work of the Oxford Centre for Maritime Archaeology, part of the University’s School of Archaeology, focusing on its research into the lost ancient city of Heracleion-Thonis, once the gateway to Egypt, which was submerged about 1,200 years ago. Researchers are excavating a ship dated at between 785BC and 480BC. Dr Damian Robinson, Director of the Centre, said: ‘The ship that we are investigating is within a group of eight of similar size…It is the largest number of ancient ships found in one place and we have found over 700 ancient anchors so far. But the work can be difficult. The visibility isn’t good.’

Read more on The Oxford Times website (opens new window)

BIG INVESTORS NEED TO FIGHT HERD INSTINCT AND TAKE MORE RISKS

Financial Times, 26/02/2015, p. 32, Ian Goldin; Ashok Gupta

Ian Goldin, director of the Oxford Martin School at the University of Oxford, co-authors an article on long-term investments.

Read more on The Financial Times website (opens new window)

MIGRATION FIGURES EXPECTED TO SHATTER CAMERON’S “TENS OF THOUSANDS” PLEDGE

The Guardian online, 26/02/2015, Alan Travis

Net migration to Britain is now higher than it was when David Cameron took office despite his promise to cut it to “tens of thousands” by this May’s general election, new official figures are expected to show on Thursday. The last set of quarterly migration figures before the general election are now widely expected to show that Cameron and the home secretary, Theresa May, have missed their politically sensitive target to reduce net migration below 100,000 by this May. The Oxford University-based Migration Observatory recently criticised claims from ministers that the reason they missed the target was increased EU net migration. “Policies have failed to reduce net migration from outside the EU to less than 100,000 at any time over the course of this parliament, meaning that the target would have been missed with or without any rise in EU migration,” the Oxford migration experts said.

Read more on The Guardian website (opens new window)