The sound of air whooshing past seems to be all around us this month. I am not talking about the hot air coming from David Cameron trying to explain his Big Society wheeze. Rather, it is the sound of doors swinging open at great speed: doors of huge opportunity in politics and in business, upsetting the way things are and paving the road ahead for the way things are going to be.
Since our last issue came out, much has happened: Tunisia’s former president fled the country, thousands of ordinary Egyptians ousted Hosni Mubarak from his 30-year presidency to make way for (we hope) a democratic government, and that boldness since spread to Iran, Bahrain and Yemen. In business, we saw the London Stock Exchange acquire Canada’s equal number and, days later, NYSE and Deutsche Börse announced their merger – creating ever larger liquidity pools for companies trading in smaller markets.
Growth is happening; countries are being reshaped. But it feels as though it is all happening outside the UK. It has seemed as though the best the UK has to offer at the moment is four percent inflation and a few headlines about the prime minister’s new cat.
It almost feels as if our economy will not start to power up until we shift this horrendously long, cold winter. But I have just noticed the first few new leaves and flowers shooting up. So perhaps we will start feeling the brisk winds of change on our backs – and start seeing some positive news for our economy.