From 8 per cent to 10 per cent sounds very little by EU standards, but the last 2 times the rate was raised – to 5 per cent in 1997 and 8 per cent in 2014 – it caused an economic recession and depressed consumer sentiment. There was a small rush on Monday to beat the move which came into force yesterday, as initially advertised. With the country already suffering the side-effects of President Trump’s trade war and their dispute with South Korea, the leading composite index is already well below 2014 and 2007 peaks.
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