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Britain actually gets cheaper to live in as four UK cities see prices drop

28 June 2019

This year’s report shows that, for once, Britain is getting a bit cheaper. Unless you live in Glasgow that it - as the city rose three places to be named the 145th most expensive city to move to.

Mercer looks into the cost of more than 200 items in locations around the world, including housing, transportation, food, clothing, household goods, and entertainment.

But while there was some good news for locals, a lot of the fall in the relative cost was a result of the pound dropping compared with other currencies.

New York is used as the base city for all global comparisons, meaning currency movements compared with the dollar can effect the results.

“UK cities’ fall in this year’s ranking is mainly due to a strengthening of the US dollar against the pound,” explained Kate Fitzpatrick, Mercer global mobility practice leader, UK and Ireland.

“Price inflation remains low, keeping any increases in the cost of living to a minimum for expatriates and locals alike.”

Mercer’s 2019 Cost of Living Survey saw London fall by four places from 19 to 23.

Birmingham fell seven places to 135 and Aberdeen fell three places to 137.

Belfast fell six places to 158.

The study, compiled by Mercer, aims to help multinational companies and governments determine compensation allowances for their expatriate employees.

Overall, despite the falling pound and concerns around Brexit , Mercer was positive about moving to the UK.

“The UK remains an attractive destination for organisations looking to relocate personnel to international business and financial centres, in spite of well-publicised macro headwinds, including Brexit,” Fitzpatrick said.

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