LONDON (Reuters) – The Bank of England marked the sixth anniversary of the introduction of its lowest ever interest rate by standing pat once again on Thursday, but an improving economy suggests rates are likely to rise at some point over the next 12 months.
While no economist polled by Reuters expects the Monetary Policy Committee to raise rates before a May 7 national election, given Britain’s record low inflation, there are signs that policymakers believe a rate hike could come sooner than markets believe.
LONDON, Feb 27 (Reuters) – Sterling steadied on Friday after
a rollercoaster week which has seen it scale seven-year highs
against the euro even as doubts appear over how much more it can
gain ahead of a potentially unsettling election in May.
Helped by an afternoon recovery in Europe for the euro
against the dollar, the pound bounced back from lows below $1.54
hit in early trade. It also inched up 0.12 percent to 72.54
pence per euro, its strongest since the end of 2007
but only 3 hundredths of a pence above Thursday’s high.
LONDON (Reuters) – Ireland has no problem in principle with the idea of swapping Greece’s official debt for growth-linked bonds but would have to see the details of any proposal, Finance Minister Michael Noonan said on Wednesday.
Euro zone finance ministers agreed on Tuesday to a four-month extension of Greece’s EU/IMF bailout program, subject to its economic plans being approved in detail with discussions set to start immediately on filling the state’s funding gap.
LONDON (Reuters) – British consumer price inflation eased last month to its lowest level since records began in 1989 and looks set to slow further, lifting voters’ disposable incomes as national elections approach.
Annual CPI fell to 0.3 percent in January, Tuesday’s official figures showed, as expected in a Reuters poll, from 0.5 percent in December.
LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s trade in goods deficit widened sharply in December on a surge in oil imports, making the trade gap for last year as a whole the biggest since 2010.
There were signs of a shift in the trade balance in the final quarter, when the goods deficit narrowed by the largest amount in three years as export volumes rose at their fastest since the second quarter of 2013.