LONDON (Reuters) – Some Bank of England policymakers think the case for raising interest rates is becoming stronger as Britain’s economy gets closer to operating at full steam, minutes of their last meeting showed on Wednesday.
“For some members, the monetary policy decision was becoming more balanced,” the minutes for May 7-8 said.
LONDON, May 20 (Reuters) – British inflation rose in April
for the first time in 10 months, but as the increase was partly
due to a late Easter holiday, which pushed up transport costs,
it was unlikely to alter interest rate expectations.
Official data also showed that growth in house prices eased
in March, potentially tempering concerns about a bubble brewing
in the property market although some more up-to-date surveys
have shown prices picking up again.
LONDON (Reuters) – Asking prices for homes in Britain hit a new record high in May, adding to concerns about the speed at which the housing market is growing.
Asking prices rose 3.6 percent in the four weeks to May 10 – the biggest ever increase for this period – to an average of 272,003 pounds ($456,900). They were up 8.9 percent from a year ago, the highest annual rate since October 2007.
LONDON (Reuters) – The Bank of England pushed back against expectations it might raise interest rates in less than a year’s time, saying on Wednesday that Britain’s economic recovery is still in its early stages.
The central bank acknowledged a strong bounce-back in the labour market since last year, lowering its forecast for unemployment for the next couple of years.
LONDON, May 14 (Reuters) – The Bank of England said on
Wednesday it is still in no rush to raise interest rates because
the recovery in the British economy remains in its early stages,
suggesting it may only raise rates in about a year’s time.
The central bank lowered its forecast for unemployment for
the next couple of years, but left largely unchanged its growth
and inflation forecasts as well as its assumptions on the timing
of interest rate rises.
LONDON, May 8 (Reuters) – Britain’s housing market lost some
of its heat in April, data showed on Thursday, but the strength
of the underlying price growth kept pressure on the Bank of
England to act to prevent a property bubble.
House prices fell 0.2 percent in April from March, coming in
below a Reuters forecast and easing for the second straight
month, mortgage lender Halifax said on Thursday.
LONDON (Reuters) – British house prices rises slowed somewhat in April, a survey showed on Thursday, tempering a surge in property values that has stirred talk of a bubble and raised concern at the Bank of England.
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors’ (RICS) seasonally adjusted house price balance eased last month to +54 from +57 in March, below a +56 forecast in a Reuters poll, though it remains close to November’s 11-year high of +58.
LONDON, May 8 (Reuters) – British house prices rises slowed
somewhat in April, a survey showed on Thursday, tempering a
surge in property values that has stirred talk of a bubble and
raised concern at the Bank of England.
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors’ (RICS)
seasonally adjusted house price balance eased last month to +54
from +57 in March, below a +56 forecast in a Reuters poll,
though it remains close to November’s 11-year high of +58.
On the face of it, the good news for the British government keeps on coming. Britain’s economy grew surprisingly fast last year and inflation fell below the Bank of England’s target for the first time in over four years in January. The government this month even got a nod from the International Monetary Fund which only last year criticized its austerity programme.
The latest confidence boost came from jobless figures on Wednesday. Not only did the unemployment rate fall to a five-year low of 6.9 percent but pay growth caught up with inflation for the first time in nearly four years. That provides Prime Minister David Cameron’s government with another lift ahead of the 2015 elections, after it has come under fire from the Labour opposition for overseeing a fall in living standards.
LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped in the three months to February, reviving speculation the Bank of England will start raising interest rates earlier than it has signaled.
Wages also caught up with inflation for the first time in nearly four years, helping the government to ward off charges of a cost-of-living crisis before next year’s national election.