Thursday newspaper round-up: Cost of living crisis, economic growth, flexible working

Some food bank users are declining items such as potatoes as they cannot afford the energy to boil them, the boss of the supermarket Iceland has said, as the soaring cost of living pushes vulnerable groups to the financial brink. Richard Walker, who says the 1,000-stores in the budget chain are in the “poorest communities in the UK”, also called on the government to help businesses that are being forced to increase prices significantly as their own costs dramatically increase. – Guardian
The war in Ukraine is to slash economic growth in Britain this year as inflation wrecks household budgets and taxes rise, the fiscal watchdog has warned. The Office for Budget Responsibility delivered a slew of downgrades in its forecasts after the Chancellor warned the conflict risks “significantly” worsening the economy and public finances. – Telegraph

Rising energy costs threaten to sabotage Boris Johnson’s plans for an electric vehicle revolution, car industry chiefs have warned. Manufacturing electric cars requires large amounts of energy, while higher bills could also deter drivers from switching from petrol-powered models. – Telegraph

Flexible working is a deciding factor for young employees in choosing whether to accept a job or look for a new one. Research by the Kantar consultancy found that 86 per cent of “Generation Z”, aged 18 to 24, and 85 per cent of millennials, aged 25 to 39, said that flexible home working policies are one of the main factors they consider when deciding whether to accept a job compared with 66 per cent of boomers, aged 56 to 75. The online survey of 7,985 employees across eight countries including the UK was conducted in January. – The Times

The Russian stock market was set to reopen early this morning after being shut for almost a month following the invasion of Ukraine. Trading on the Moscow Exchange has been suspended since the end of February in an effort to stabilise the market. On February 24, the day of the invasion, the Moex index of leading Russian stocks dropped by as much as 45 per cent, the most on record, as investors rushed to sell their holdings. The index clawed back some of those losses the following day – the last session before it was closed. – The Times

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