UK Economics Correspondent, London
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Oct 16, 2014

UK gilts suffer biggest fall in over a year as markets rethink BoE bets

LONDON (Reuters) – British government bond prices suffered their biggest fall in over a year on Thursday, erasing almost all of Wednesday’s strong gains, as traders rethought their view that the Bank of England would not raise interest rates next year.

On another dramatic day in financial markets on both sides of the Atlantic, 10-year British gilt yields GB10YT=RR rose more than 13 basis points on the day to 2.09 percent — their largest one-day rise in over a year.

Oct 15, 2014

Bank error in UK’s favour may cut new borrowing by 10 billion pounds

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain may need to raise almost 10 billion pounds less from financial markets this year than previously thought, after its statisticians and the finance ministry discovered a raft of errors in a key measure of borrowing needs.

The Office for National Statistics said on Wednesday that errors in the finance ministry’s reporting systems – largely linked to transfers from the Bank of England – meant the amount of money that Britain needed to borrow since December 2012 had been overstated by 9.684 billion pounds ($15 billion).

Oct 14, 2014

Britain plans to allow over-55s greater access to pension savings

LONDON, Oct 14 (Reuters) – Britons coming up to retirement
will find it easier to spend their pension savings early,
according to government plans announced on Tuesday that extend a
big overhaul of pensions set out earlier this year.

Finance minister George Osborne said in March that Britons
with private pension savings would no longer be required to
convert them on retirement into an annuity that provides a fixed
income for life.

Oct 10, 2014

Bank of England had cash ready in case Scotland chose independence

LONDON, Oct 10 (Reuters) – The Bank of England planned to
shore up Britain’s financial system quickly if Scotland voted
for independence last month, with extra banknotes ready in case
of big withdrawals from Scottish banks.

Scots voted on Sept. 18 to keep their centuries-old union
with the rest of the United Kingdom. Opinion polls running up to
the referendum had suggested a tight outcome, and on Friday the
BoE disclosed what might have happened if Scots had voted ‘yes’.

Oct 8, 2014

British Chambers of Commerce warns of ‘alarm bell’ for UK recovery

LONDON (Reuters) – The British Chambers of Commerce warned of a “first alarm bell” for Britain’s rapid economic recovery after firms reported the weakest export growth in almost two years and a big slowdown in manufacturing.

The BCC’s quarterly economic survey – the largest of its kind in Britain – showed that while domestic demand for services continued to grow at a near-record pace, the picture for other parts of the economy deteriorated sharply.

Oct 2, 2014

Bank of England backs flagship government mortgage guarantee scheme

LONDON, Oct 2 (Reuters) – The Bank of England gave a clean
bill of health to Britain’s flagship mortgage guarantee scheme
on Thursday, sparing the government from potential embarrassment
in the run-up to a national election.

But it asked for new powers to curb risky mortgage borrowing
- including funding for buy-to-let investments for the first
time – and said it would speed up plans to limit how much banks
can lend relative to their capital.

Sep 30, 2014

UK house prices fall for first time in 17 months

LONDON (Reuters) – House prices in Britain fell for the first time since April 2013 this month, mortgage lender Nationwide said, adding to evidence that a surge in house prices is starting to level off.

Nationwide said the average house price in Britain unexpectedly fell by 0.2 percent in September to 188,374 pounds after rising by 0.8 percent in August.

Sep 30, 2014

UK house prices fall for first time in 17 months -Nationwide

LONDON, Sept 30 (Reuters) – House prices in Britain fell for
the first time since April 2013 this month, mortgage lender
Nationwide said, adding to evidence that a surge in house prices
is starting to level off.

Nationwide said the average house price in Britain
unexpectedly fell by 0.2 percent in September to 188,374 pounds
($306,500) after rising by 0.8 percent in August.

Sep 25, 2014

Bank of England’s Carney says rate rise “getting closer”

LONDON, Sept 25 (Reuters) The Bank of England is getting nearer
to raising interest rates, but the exact date will depend on
economic data, Governor Mark Carney said in a speech on
Thursday.

Carney stuck close to previous remarks on monetary policy in
his address to actuaries, much of which focused on the BoE’s
plans for further regulating insurers.

Sep 23, 2014

UK August public finances show further slippage, income tax weak

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s public finances deteriorated again in August after a weak start to the financial year, posing a challenge for Chancellor George Osborne as next year’s national election approaches.

The Office for National Statistics said public sector net borrowing, excluding state-controlled banks, totalled 11.6 billion pounds in August, up 6.1 percent from a year earlier, broadly in line with economists’ expectations in a Reuters poll.

    • 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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