Posts Tagged ‘UK Economy’

UK investment shows signs of slowing, says ONS

Saturday, January 28th, 2017

The Corus steelworks in Port Talbot, South Wales. The ONS said there were signs business investment growth was starting to slow.

Consumer spending and retail growth are stronger but manufacturing is falling back, figures show.

British businesses are becoming more reluctant to spend, according to the Office for National Statistics, as the UK relies heavily on consumers to prop up the post-Brexit vote economy. In its latest monthly snapshot of the UK economy, the ONS said there were signs that business investment growth was starting to slow. Investment by companies grew by 0.9% in the third quarter, down from 1% in the previous quarter. It fell by 1.6% on an annual basis.

“While there has been stronger consumer spending and retail growth, the contribution from investment has showed signs of waning slightly in recent quarters,” the ONS said.

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Bank of England must be wary of interest rate rise, says chief economist

Saturday, January 21st, 2017

The Bank of England

Andy Haldane says UK at risk of sharp slowdown as BoE weighs up conflicting forces of inflation from weak pound and the Brexit vote denting confidence. The Bank of England should be wary of rushing into interest rate rises to curb inflation, according to its chief economist, in a warning that the UK economy is vulnerable to a sharper slowdown next year than forecasts would suggest.

Andy Haldane said he was comfortable with the Bank’s current wait-and-see stance on borrowing costs as it weighs up the conflicting forces of a lower pound stoking inflation and the Brexit vote denting business confidence. In a bid to shore up confidence after the referendum, the Bank cut interest rates to a record low of 0.25% in August and expanded its programme of electronic money-printing, known as quantitative easing (QE). It had hinted at another interest rate cut before the end of the year but a flurry of brighter than expected economic news forced the Bank to row back on that guidance. Haldane said on Friday that economic output had outperformed the expectations of the Bank’s monetary policy committee (MPC) back in August while inflation had picked up, largely as a result of the pound’s sharp fall since the referendum, which makes imports to the UK more expensive. “That configuration now leaves me comfortable with the current stance of monetary policy, with no bias on the direction of the next move in interest rates,” he said.

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Britain’s economy could face £84bn black hole post-Brexit

Tuesday, November 29th, 2016

Image result for uk economy

Britain’s economy could face a black hole of £84bn ($102.3bn) by the time the Chancellor sets out his spending plans in the Autumn Statement next month, a think tank has warned.

According to a report from the Resolution Foundation, the deteriorating economic outlook, increased spending and lower tax receipts in the aftermath of Brexit could leave the government facing a shortfall until 2020-21.

The think-tank warned the Treasury would face a £23bn deficit at the end of the parliament, meaning the government would have to find a combined £84bn to balance the books over the next five years. However, the Foundation added, the only way to do so would be by implementing cuts or allow for extra borrowing.

George Osborne’s pledge to achieve a budget surplus by 2020 has already been abandoned by the government, which by then could be confronted with an economy £60bn smaller than it was expected to be before the referendum.

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Nissan boosted UK investment after it ‘got 11th-hour pledge’ it would not be hurt by Brexit

Saturday, November 12th, 2016

Nissan Sunderland

Nissan demanded and received a guarantee from the Government about the UK’s future post-Brexit before the manufacturer agreed to keep investing in the country, it has been reported.

After the car maker said it would build two new car models at its Sunderland plant, it emerged that ministers were forced to give a last-minute assurance that its UK operations would “remain competitive”.

The Times reported that Business Secretary Greg Clark had written to the board of the Japanese company in what was considered a guarantee that it would not face high tariffs on car exports if the UK leaves the EU customs area without a free trade agreement.

Downing Street has denied that Nissan was offered a “sweetheart deal” as other car manufacturers called for similar pledges, with Toyota saying it trusted the government to provide “fair treatment”.

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UK economy grows 0.5% in three months after Brexit vote

Saturday, November 5th, 2016

GDP graph

The UK’s service sector helped the economy to grow faster than expected in the three months after the Brexit vote, official figures have indicated.

The economy expanded by 0.5% in the July-to-September period, according to the Office for National Statistics.

That was slower than the 0.7% rate in the previous quarter, but stronger than analysts’ estimates of about 0.3%.

“There is little evidence of a pronounced effect in the immediate aftermath of the vote,” the ONS said.

The stronger than expected growth will further dampen expectations that the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee will cut interest rates next week.

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Brexit vote ‘will not dent economy this year’ as UK growth forecasts back to pre-referendum levels

Friday, October 7th, 2016

The UK’s decision to leave the EU will not dent growth at all this year, according to economic forecasts compiled by the Treasury, in a complete reversal of the gloomy short term forecasts made after the EU referendum. Panic has faded rapidly among the dozens of independent economists consulted by the Treasury as strong data in the three months since the vote reassured the analysts that any shock from the vote was far less severe than first feared. Forecasts for 2016’s GDP growth had been chopped to 1.5pc immediately after the 23 June ballot, but economists have reversed those downgrades and now expect growth of 1.8pc – exactly the same as they predicted before the vote. The study of dozens of analysts’ work also shows that forecasters still expect the economy to slow down next year, but they are increasingly revising those forecasts upward. In July the average prediction was for growth of 0.5pc in 2017, but now it almost doubled to 0.9pc – though it remains below the 2.1pc average forecast before the vote.

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Hard Brexit could cost the UK £10bn in lost taxes

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016

philip-hammond-8-2016.jpg

UK banks fear they may lose passporting, or the ability to do business with the whole of the EU in the event of a ‘hard Brexit’ Chancellor Philip Hammond is to present his first budget statement in November, setting out how the government will use tax and spending plans to shore up the UK economy after the vote to leave the EU Getty. A so called “hard Brexit” deal, which would see the UK drifting away from cooperation with the rest of the EU, could cost the UK billions in lost taxes, treasury officials have privately warned. The hardline approach to UK’s vote to leave the EU – favoured by some leading Conservative Eurosceptic ministers – includes leaving the European single market and ending free movement.

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UK borrowing falling slower than hoped despite July surplus – as it happened

Thursday, September 8th, 2016

Skyscrapers in the City of London.

US rig numbers rise for eighth week

UK Dividends Lag Behind Rest Of World After Growth Hit

Wednesday, September 7th, 2016

UK dividends are lagging behind the rest of the globe after eking out the weakest performance in the G7, a report has found.

UK dividends are lagging behind the rest of the globe after eking out the weakest performance in the G7, a report has found. The Henderson Global Dividend Index found that UK dividends fell by 3.3% year-on-year in the second quarter, as the slump in sterling and cuts from blue-chip companies hammered growth. However, the UK’s total of 33.7 billion US dollars (£25.8 billion) was 7.7% higher than last year, thanks in part to special dividends issued by drugs giant GlaxoSmithKline and Intercontinental Hotels. It said corporate heavyweights Standard Chartered, Anglo American, Barclays and Morrisons were among the firms to make deep cuts. Alex Crooke, head of global equity income at Henderson Global Investors said: “Profit growth remains under pressure in the UK, limiting the potential for companies to increase dividends.

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U.K. economy grows 0.4% in Q1, business investment falls

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

© Reuters. U.K. GDP unrevised as expected

Investing.com – As expected, growth in the U.K. economy in the first three months of the 2016 went unrevised, although business investment suffered a downward revision in the final estimate released on Thursday. In a report, the Office for National Statistics said gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by a seasonally adjusted 0.4% in the first quarter, unchanged in this final estimate and in line with expectations. The U.K.’s economy grew by 0.6% in the preceding quarter. Year-over-year, U.K. economic growth grew 2.0% in the three months ended March 31, also in line with forecasts and unchanged from the prior estimate. The U.K. economy expanded at an annualized rate of 2.1% in the fourth quarter of 2015. Meanwhile, business investment fell by a seasonally adjusted 0.6% in the first quarter, below forecasts for the prior drop of 0.5% to be revised upwards to a 0.4% decline. That followed a decline of 2.0% in the preceding quarter.

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