Doubts over just how soon the Bank of England can raise interest rates have been growing in recent weeks as Britain’s recovery looks in danger, inflation remains stubbornly low and concerns about the euro zone intensify.
The two forecasting teams that came closest to predicting the U.S. economy would nearly stall in the first quarter expect other key economic data due this week to be strong.
This time last year, analysts and investors were nearly unanimous in their expectation for a whole lot of nothing from Britain’s economy which, after a valiant leap higher from a spectacularly successful 2012 Olympic Games hosted in London, was back to just bumping along.
Ask three different economists and you’ll get three different answers.
While that’s not anything new, the different ways some analysts have spun the surprise — one of the biggest on U.S. data in many months — is exceptionally far from anything resembling a consensus.
Ask an economist a question about the euro zone, and the answer will as much depend on the location of their head office as any analysis of the data.
Reuters has just published a poll of economists that shows Federal Reserve Vice-Chair Janet Yellen is the overwhelming favorite pick for President Obama to replace Ben Bernanke as Fed Chairman next year.