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Mohamed A. El-Erian

UK’s Discontent Risks Deepening a Longer-Term Malaise

Britain can’t stop a cost-of-living crisis in the short term, but it must come up with a new growth model that is designed for the changing structure of the domestic and global economy.

The UK is bracing for three days of rail strikes.

The UK is bracing for three days of rail strikes.

Photographer: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

It is starting to feel even more like the 1970s in the UK as the threat of nationwide rail strikes this week amplify the already unsettling feeling stemming from high inflation and slowing economic growth. While there are some important differences with the 70s, these are unlikely to be enough to preclude a “summer of discontent,” with a particularly heavy burden imposed on the most vulnerable segments of the population.

An important question is whether the disruptions will have adverse secular consequences, aggravating long-standing economic and social fragilities.