Bank of England rate setters meeting this week should be in cordial agreement that Britain’s economy is growing at a decent pace, and that price pressures look mostly in check at the moment.
Speculation about when the Bank of England hikes interest rates took a new twist on Wednesday after minutes from the June policy meeting struck a less hawkish tone than the Governor did in a speech late last week.
Bank of England Governor Mark Carney shocked markets last week, saying interest rates could rise sooner than expected.
“It could happen sooner than markets currently expect.”
That was the bomb of a headline Bank of England Mark Carney dropped in a speech on Thursday that suggested a significant change in tone at the bank.
Vladimir Putin is well into his second and final day of a trip to China during which he was hoping to sign a long-sought gas deal with Beijing. There’s no sign of white smoke so far and if the Russian president leaves empty handed it would be a serious blow.
Some interesting action over the weekend: in a foretaste of this week’s EU elections, Greece’s leftist, anti-bailout Syriza party performed strongly in the first round of local elections on Sunday, capitalizing on voter anger at ongoing government austerity policies.
Given the silence that attends Bank of England policy meetings which result in no change of course, today’s quarterly inflation report is the main chance to hear the latest thinking. Governor Mark Carney will talk to the media for an hour or so after its release.