UK Economics Correspondent, London
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Dec 16, 2014

Britain’s state-backed banks scrape through stress tests

LONDON (Reuters) – The Bank of England gave Britain’s state-backed lenders a narrow pass in its debut annual stress tests on Tuesday, but warned that next year banks would face tougher checks of their capital strength and international exposure.

Lloyds and rival Royal Bank of Scotland scraped through a doomsday scenario of plummeting house prices and soaring unemployment after both took pre-emptive measures to boost their defences against potential losses.

Dec 16, 2014

Plunging oil prices could boost geopolitical tensions: Bank of England report

LONDON (Reuters) – Plunging oil prices could heighten geopolitical tensions, trigger defaults by U.S. shale oil and gas firms and destabilize euro zone inflation expectations, the Bank of England warned on Tuesday.

In a half-yearly assessment of global financial risks, Britain’s central bank said market concerns about persistent slow growth and political risks had risen over the past six months, and warned investors could ditch risky assets.

Dec 16, 2014

Plunging oil prices could boost geopolitical tensions – BoE report

LONDON, Dec 16 (Reuters) – Plunging oil prices could
heighten geopolitical tensions, trigger defaults by U.S. shale
oil and gas firms and destabilise euro zone inflation
expectations, the Bank of England warned on Tuesday.

In a half-yearly assessment of global financial risks,
Britain’s central bank said market concerns about persistent
slow growth and political risks had risen over the past six
months, and warned investors could ditch risky assets.

Dec 16, 2014

Lloyds payout in balance after scrapes through UK bank test

LONDON, Dec 16 (Reuters) – Britain’s state-backed lenders
only narrowly passed the Bank of England’s debut annual stress
test, putting the prospects of Lloyds paying a dividend
for 2014 in the balance.

Lloyds and its British banking rival Royal Bank of Scotland
on Tuesday scraped through a doomsday scenario of
plummeting house prices and soaring unemployment after both took
pre-emptive measures to shore up their capital.

Dec 16, 2014

Bank of England stress tests pass all banks apart from Co-op

LONDON (Reuters) – All Britain’s main banks would be able to withstand a sharp fall in house prices, other than the troubled Co-operative Bank, the Bank of England said on Tuesday.

State-backed RBS and Lloyds only scraped through the BoE’s first sector-wide test of the health of major lenders after both took pre-emptive measures to shore up their capital defenses before the BoE reached its conclusions.

Dec 15, 2014

UK government sets more ambitious budget target as election nears

LONDON/POOLE, England (Reuters) – Britain’s coalition government promised on Monday to put its ambitious budget targets on a more formal footing, in a largely political move meant to embarrass the Labour party.

Cutting Britain’s deficit has been the main economic goal of the country’s Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition since it came to power in 2010, and Chancellor George Osborne wants to keep it at the top of the agenda in the run-up to a national election in May 2015.

Dec 12, 2014

S&P doubts UK deficit target, says more tax revenue may be needed

LONDON (Reuters) – Ratings agency Standard & Poor’s said on Friday Britain’s public borrowing was likely to be higher than the government had forecast and the country might need to find ways to raise more tax revenue to balance the books.

Finance minister George Osborne has said he intends to balance Britain’s budget over the coming years through spending cuts alone, a pledge which will be central to the campaign of Prime Minister David Cameron ahead of national elections in May.

Dec 12, 2014

Air traffic control failure disrupts flights over Britain

LONDON (Reuters) – Flights to and from London were severely disrupted on Friday by a technical failure at England’s main air traffic control center that forced authorities to limit access to the country’s airspace.

Flights in and out of Heathrow, which calls itself the world’s busiest international airport, were halted for at least an hour before it said operations were beginning to resume.

Dec 8, 2014

UK rate rise in 2015 to test high-debt households

LONDON (Reuters) – Britons who have relied on years of record-low interest rates to manage hefty mortgages are looking nervously ahead to 2015, when the Bank of England finally looks set to start raising rates.

British people have more debt per head than in any other big rich economy, at around 140 percent of income, barely down from its peak as the financial crisis broke and equivalent to 1.5 trillion pounds ($2.3 trillion) in total.

Dec 8, 2014

Analysis – UK rate rise in 2015 to test high-debt households

LONDON (Reuters) – Britons who have relied on years of record-low interest rates to manage hefty mortgages are looking nervously ahead to 2015, when the Bank of England finally looks set to start raising rates.

British people have more debt per head than in any other big rich economy, at around 140 percent of income, barely down from its peak as the financial crisis broke and equivalent to 1.5 trillion pounds in total.

    • About David

      "David keeps a close watch on the UK economy, the Bank of England and the British government debt market. Previously he worked in Frankfurt, covering the European Central Bank and euro zone economy, and in Brussels where he reported on everything from EU summits to Belgian supermarkets."
      Languages:
      English, French, German
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