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16 September 2016 The MPC Remains Poised to Cut Rates in November (My Publications)

Without tying its hands, the MPC--which voted unanimously to keep interest rates at 0.25% and to continue with the £60B of gilt purchases and £10B of corporate bond purchases authorised last month--gave a strong indication yesterday that it still expects to cut Bank Rate in November.

4 November. 2016 Inflation Concerns Now Dominate on the MPC (My Publications)

The MPC surprised markets and ourselves yesterday by the extent to which it abandoned its previous stance and is now emphasising inflation over growth risks.

4 May. The MPC Won't Cut Rates to Alleviate the Manufacturing Slump (My Publications)

The nosedive in the Markit/CIPS manufacturing PMI in April provides an early sign that GDP growth is likely to slow even further in the second quarter. The MPC, however, looks set to keep its powder dry. We continue to think that the next move in interest rates will be up, towards the end of this year.

4 August 2017 Little from the MPC to Support Markets' Steep Near-Term Rate Path (My Publications)

Markets still see a near-40% chance of the MPC raising Bank Rate by the end of this year--the same as at the start of this week--despite the notable absence of comments from the Committee yesterday aimed at preparing the ground for a near term hike.

31 October. 2016 MPC Likely to Reaffirm Easing Bias, to Markets Surprise (My Publications)

The MPC would have to change tack sharply on Thursday in order to live up to the markets' expectation that there is a near-zero chance of another rate cut within the next year.

16 May. Inflation Likely to Surprise the MPC to the Upside, Again (My Publications)

The MPC predicted in last week's Inflation Report that CPI inflation eased to 0.3% in April, thereby fully reversing its increase in March to 0.5%. We think, however, the Committee is underestimating the strength of inflation pressures across the economy.

16 March 2017 Slowing Wage Gains Support the MPC's Loose Policy Stance (My Publications)

Yesterday's labour market data significantly bolster the consensus view on the MPC that interest rates do not need to rise this year to counter the imminent burst of inflation. Granted, the headline, three-month average, unemployment rate fell to 4.7% in January--its lowest rate since August 1975--from 4.8% in December, defying the consensus forecast for no-change.

15 September The MPC Signals Higher Rates Soon, but it is Racked With Doubts (My Publications)

The MPC surprised markets, and ourselves, yesterday with the escalation of its hawkish rhetoric in the minutes of its policy meeting.

15 June 2017 The MPC's Minutes Will Sound Balanced, Despite Surging Inflation (My Publications)

Today's MPC meeting and minutes are the first opportunity for Committee members to speak out in over a month, now that election "purdah" rules have lifted.

5 Nov. 2015 More MPC Hawks Likely to Emerge Today, Despite Services Slowdown (My Publications)

The improvement in the Markit/CIPS services PMI in October was pretty limp, supporting our view here that the recovery is shifting into a lower gear. What's more, the poor productivity performance implied by the latest PMIs indicates that wage growth will fuel inflation soon. As a result, the Monetary Policy Committee--MPC--won't be able to wait long next year before raising interest rates. Indeed, we expect the minutes of this month's meeting, released today, to show that one more member of the nine-person MPC has joined Ian McCafferty in voting to hike rates.

16 June 2017 What Do the Internal MPC Members Need to See to Raise Rates? (My Publications)

Sterling received a shot in the arm yesterday following the release of the minutes of the MPC's meeting, which revealed that three members voted to raise interest rates to 0.50%, from 0.25% currently. Markets and economists--including ourselves--had expected another 7-1 split, but Ian McCafferty and Michael Saunders switched sides and joined Kristin Forbes in seeking higher rates.

5 August. 2016 The MPC Exceeds Expectations, but Inflation Will Constrain it Next Year (My Publications)

The MPC's package of stimulus measures, which exceeded markets' expectations, demonstrates that it is currently placing little weight on the inflation outlook. Even so, if inflation matches our expectations and overshoots the 2% target by a bigger margin next year than the MPC currently thinks is acceptable, it will have to consider its zeal for more stimulus.

3 November. 2016 MPC to Catch Out Markets Again with Lingering Dovish Tone (My Publications)

Markets are pricing-in just a 10% chance of the MPC cutting interest rates again within the next six months, odds that look too low given the strong likelihood that the economic recovery loses more pace.

19 January 2017 Wage Growth Won't Force The MPC to Hike Rates This Year (My Publications)

The most striking aspect of yesterday's labour market report was the pick-up in the headline three month average year-over-year growth rate of average weekly wages, to a 14-month high of 2.8% in November, from 2.6% in October. Although still low by pre-recession standards, wage growth now is close to the rate that might worry the MPC.

27 July 2017 GDP Growth Will Remain Weak in 2017, Keeping the MPC Inactive (My Publications)

GDP rose by 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in Q2, according to the ONS' preliminary estimate, confirming that the economy has fundamentally slowed since the Brexit vote. The modest growth has reduced further the already-small risk that the MPC will raise interest rates at its next meeting on August 3.

27 March 2017 Could the MPC Adopt a "One and Done" Hike Strategy? (My Publications)

A series of events have forced markets and analysts to re-evaluate their assumption that Bank Rate will remain on hold throughout 2017. First, the minutes of the MPC's meeting had a hawkish tilt.

26 Oct. 2015 MPC Can't Wait too Long After the U.S. Fed Raises Rates (My Publications)

Markets currently judge that U.K. interest rates will rise about six months after the first Fed hike. But the Bank of England seldom lagged this far behind in the past. Admittedly, the slowdown in the domestic economy that we expect will require the Monetary Policy Committee to be cautious. But wage and exchange rate pressures are likely to mean six months is the maximum period the MPC can wait before following the Fed's lead.

22 July. 2016 Emerging Divisions on the MPC Signal Only Modest August Easing (My Publications)

Soon after last week's vote to keep Bank Rate at 0.50%, the MPC's doves were quick to assert that monetary easing is still imminent. A speech by Andy Haldane, published on July 15, called for "... a package of mutually complementary monetary policy easing measures" that should be "delivered promptly and muscularly". Meanwhile, Gertjan Vlieghe, who was alone in voting for a rate cut in July, wrote in The Financial Times last week that he also favours "a package of additional measures" in August.

22 March 2017 Inflation Will Continue to Exceed the MPC's Forecast (My Publications)

February's consumer price figures provided hard evidence that the import price shock, caused by sterling's depreciation last year, is filtering through faster than the MPC expected. We expect CPI inflation to continue to exceed the forecast set out in February's Inflation Report.

28 June 2017 Inflation Forecast Revisions in August won't Force the MPC's Hand (My Publications)

The minutes of the MPC's meeting in June indicated that several members' patience for tolerating for above-target inflation is wearing thin.

3 August 2017 Will the MPC Call Time on the Term Funding Scheme? (My Publications)

We see only a small risk today of the MPC raising interest rates or sending a strong signal that a hike is imminent, for the reasons we set out in our preview of the meeting. The MPC, however, also must decide today whether to wind up the Term Funding Scheme-- TFS--launched a year ago as part of its post-Brexit stimulus measures.

3 August. 2016 The MPC Won't Be Afraid to Disappoint Markets' Stimulus Hopes (My Publications)

Many investors are betting that the MPC will announce a bold package of easing measures on Thursday. For a start, overnight index swap markets are pricing-in a 98% probability that the MPC will cut Bank Rate to 0.25%, and a 30% chance that interest rates will fall to, or below, zero by the end of the year.

3 February 2017 MPC Signals Newfound Supply Optimism, no Near-Term Rate Hike (My Publications)

The absence of hawkish undertones in the minutes of the MPC's meeting or in the Inflation Report forecasts took markets by surprise yesterday. The dominant view on the Committee remains that the economy will slow over the next couple of years, preventing wage growth from reaching a pace which would put inflation on trac k permanently to exceed the 2% target.

2 August. 2016 The Inflation Outlook Will Tie the MPC's Hands (My Publications)

The pronounced weakness of activity surveys conducted since the referendum and the Governor's guidance in June, reinforced by the minutes of July's MPC meeting, indicate that a rate cut on Thursday is virtually guaranteed.

2 February 2017 Rising Inflation Expectations to Yield Hawkish Talk from the MPC Today (My Publications)

Expectations are running high that the MPC will strike a more hawkish tone today in the minutes of this month's meeting and in the quarterly Inflation Report. Investors are pricing in a 45% chance of the MPC raising interest rates before the end of 2017, up from 30% before the last Report in November.

20 Apr. Wage Growth is Picking Up, Pressuring the MPC to Act (My Publications)

Today's labour market figures likely will show that wage growth is bouncing back from a soft patch in late 2015. As a result, the MPC won't be able to sit on its hands much longer, especially in light of the continued dire news on productivity.

15 Apr. Nothing in MPC Minutes to Support Rate Cut Speculation (My Publications)

The minutes of yesterday's MPC meeting indicate that it is not going to be panicked into cutting interest rates in the run-up to the E.U. referendum in June. The Committee voted unanimously again to keep Bank Rate at 0.5%, and dovish comments were conspicuously absent.

7 Dec. 2015 Will the MPC Attempt to Steer the Markets to an Earlier Hike Again? (My Publications)

December's meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee is likely to be a quiet affair in comparison to this month's pivotal ECB and Fed meetings. It's hard to see what news would have persuaded other members to join Ian McCafferty in voting to raise interest rates this month. The MPC might comment in the minutes to try to reverse the further fall in market interest rate expectations since its previous meeting, when it already thought they were too low. But the potency of any moderately hawkish guidance may be diluted by further strident comments from the Committee's doves.

11 Jan. 2016 Plunging Oil Prices Won't Distract the MPC as Inflation Rises (My Publications)

Investors have lowered once again their expectations for official interest rates and now do not anticipate any rate hikes this year. Markets appear to have judged that the plunge in oil prices will ensure that inflation is too low for the Monetary Policy Committee to tighten policy. Oil prices, however, are not the be-all and end-all for inflation or monetary policy, and we doubt they will distract the MPC from the continued firming of domestic price pressures this year.

26 June 2017 Keep Calm and Carry On Expecting Further Inaction from the MPC (My Publications)

Mark Carney's assertion that "now is not yet the time to raise rates" fell on deaf ears last week. Markets are pricing-in a 20% chance that the MPC will increase Bank Rate at the next meeting on August 3, up from 10% just after the MPC's meeting on June 15, when three members voted to hike rates.

12 Nov. 2015 Slight Weakening in Wage Growth Won't Delay the MPC (My Publications)

Markets were right to conclude that September's slightly weaker average weekly wage figures will have little impact on the MPC's decision on when to raise official interest rates. Fundamentally, wage pressures are building and likely will contribute to pushing CPI inflation back to its 2% target towards the end of 2016.

11 Dec. 2015 The MPC is Independent, But it Cannot Ignore Other Central Banks (My Publications)

The MPC's asserted its independence in the minutes of December's meeting, firmly stating that there is "no mechanical link between UK policy and those of other central banks". Markets have interpreted this as supporting their view that the MPC won't be rushed into raising interest rates by the Fed's actions. Investors now expect a nine-month gap between the Fed hike we anticipate next week, and the first move in the U.K.

1 September 2017 Interest Rate Changes Act Faster than the MPC's Hawks Argue (My Publications)

MPC member Michael Saunders, who has voted to raise interest rates at the last two MPC meetings, argued in a speech yesterday that tighter monetary policy is required now partly because it affects the economy with a long lag.

04 October. 2016 Manufacturing Revival Bolsters Case for the MPC to Hold Fire (My Publications)

The odds of the MPC cutting interest rates again in November took another knock yesterday after further signs that the manufacturing sector is getting back on its feet quickly.

1 August. 2016 Negative Interest Rates Won't Be Part of the MPC's Policy Response (My Publications)

The collapse in business activity and consumer confidence since the referendum has sealed the deal on policy easing from the MPC on Thursday. The Committee has cut Bank Rate by 50 basis points when the composite PMI has been near July's level in the past, as our first chart shows.

13 January 2017 The MPC Is In For a Nasty Inflation Shock This Year (My Publications)

Over the last decade, the MPC has underestimated the extent and duration of departures of CPI inflation from the 2% target. Inflation exceeded the MPC's expectations in the early 2010s, as policymakers underestimated the impact of sterling's prior depreciation and overestimated the role that slack would play in stifling price pressures. Inflation also undershot the MPC's forecast between 2014 and 2016, when sterling's appreciation reduced import prices.

11 September 2017 Will the MPC Step up its Rhetoric to Support the Pound? (My Publications)

The key question for the MPC at this week's meeting is whether it is prepared to tolerate the consequences for inflation of sterling's further depreciation since its last meeting in August.

13 March 2017 Signs of a Slowdown in Q1 Ease Pressure on the MPC to Hike Rates (My Publications)

The MPC's meeting on Thursday looks set to be a perfunctory affair. Signs that the economy has lost momentum this year, alongside downward surprises from CPI inflation in January and wage growth in December, mean the Committee won't give the idea of hiking rates a moment's thought.

13 May. MPC Signals Bremain Rate Hike, and Sounds Cool on Brexit Cut (My Publications)

The MPC's "Super Thursday" releases suggest that the Committee won't wait long to raise interest rates after a vote to stay in the E.U., which remains the most likely outcome of June's referendum. Meanwhile, we saw nothing to support markets' view that the MPC would ease policy in the wake of a Brexit.

04 Jan. 2016 Further Slowdown Won't Prevent the MPC Raising Rates in 2016 (My Publications)

Markets were on the right side of the argument with economists about the outlook for monetary policy in 2015, but we doubt history will repeat itself this year. The consensus among economists a year ago was for interest rates to rise to 0.75% from 0.5% by the end of 2015, in contrast to the markets' view that an increase was unlikely.

3 March 2017 Will the Chancellor Change the MPC's Inflation Target? (My Publications)

The CPIH--the controversial, modified version of the existing CPI that includes a measure of owner occupied housing, or OOH, costs--will become the headline measure of consumer price inflation when February's data are published on March 21.

04 Mar. 2016 Will the MPC Cut Rates to Counteract the Slowdown? (My Publications)

The chances of a cut in official interest rates were boosted yesterday by the sharp fall in the business activity index of the Markit/CIPS report on services in February, to its weakest level since April 2013. Its decline, to just 52.8 from 55.6 in January, mirrored falls in the manufacturing and construction PMIs earlier in the week and pushed the weighted average of the three survey's main balances down to a level consistent with quarter-on-quarter GDP growth of just 0.2% in Q1.

31 January 2017 Will the MPC Need to Raise Rates to Cool Consumer Credit Growth? (My Publications)

December's money data likely will bring further signs that the U.K. economy's growth spurt late last year was paid for with unsecured borrowing. Retail sales fell by 1.9% month-to-month in December, so we doubt that unsecured borrowing will match November's £1.7B increase, which was the biggest since March 2005.

4 August. 2016 The PMIs Highlight the MPC's Policy Dilemma (My Publications)

The final July PMIs indicate that the post-referendum slump in activity has been even worse than the flash estimates originally implied. The manufacturing PMI was revised down to 48.2, from the 49.1 flash reading, while the services PMI was unrevised at 47.4, its lowest level since March 2009.

6 May. The MPC Won't Step in to Revive the Economy this Time (My Publications)

The latest U.K. PMIs were unambiguously dreadful. The manufacturing, construction and services PMIs all fell in April, and their weighted average points to quarter-on-quarter growth in GDP slowing to zero in Q2, from 0.4% in Q1. The U .K.'s composite PMI also undershot the Eurozone's for the second month this year.

23 Feb. 2016 Would the MPC Just Let Sterling Drop Like a Stone? (My Publications)

Sterling will be under the spotlight again today when four members of the Monetary Policy Committee, including Governor Mark Carney, answer questions from the Treasury Select Committee about the recent Inflation Report.

9 Dec. 2015 Could Falling Oil Prices Delay the MPC Again? (My Publications)

The price of Brent oil has fallen sharply to $40 per barrel from about $50 just a month ago, and speculation is mounting that it could plunge to $20 soon. But CPI inflation should still pick up over coming months, provided oil prices remain above $30. And the absence of "second-round" effects of lower oil prices this year should reassure the Monetary Policy Committee that lower oil prices won't bear down on inflation over the medium-term.

19 September 2017 Four Reasons Why the MPC Likely Will Procrastinate in November (My Publications)

For the record, we think the Fed should raise rates in December, given the long lags in monetary policy and the clear strength in the economy, especially the labor market, evident in the pre-hurricane data.

15 Dec. 2015 Dip in Wage Growth Hasn't Lessened the Pressure on the MPC (My Publications)

Investors kicked expectations for the first rise in official interest rates even further into the future when last month's labour market data, revealing a sharp fall in wage growth, were released. But a closer look at the official figures reveals that labour cost pressures have remained robust, cautioning against making a snap reaction if even weaker wage data are released on Wednesday.

14 Mar. Will the MPC Mull an Interest Rate Cut this Week? (My Publications)

This week's key market event likely will be the Monetary Policy Committee's meeting on Thursday, rather than the Budget on Wednesday, which probably will see the Chancellor stick to his previous tough fiscal plans.

15 December 2016 October's Surprising Labor Data Will Make the MPC Think, not Act (My Publications)

The Bank of England won't set markets alight today. We expect another 9-0 vote to leave rates unchanged at 0.25%, and to continue with the £50B of gilt purchases and $10B of corporate bond purchases announced in August. This is not to say, though, that everything is plain sailing for the Monetary Policy Committee.

12 September 2016 Will the MPC Stand By its Rate Cut Guidance this Week? (My Publications)

The Monetary Policy Committee likely will not follow up August's stimulus measures with another rate cut at its meeting on Thursday. The partial revival in surveys of activity and confidence have weakened the case for immediate action.

14 Jan. 2016 Inflation Outlook Still Could Push MPC to Hike Before the Summer (My Publications)

Markets' judgement that the Monetary Policy Committee--which meets today--will wait until 2017 to raise interest rates overestimates the role that the drop in oil prices and slower GDP growth will play in its decision-making. The inflation risks emanating from the increasingly tight labour market still could motivate a tightening before the summer.

11 October. 2016 The MPC Won't Ignore Inflation This Time (My Publications)

If sustained, sterling's recent depreciation looks set to drive CPI inflation up to about 3.5% by the end of next year.

1 July. 2016 The MPC Likely Will Dash Expectations of Substantial Easing (My Publications)

Mark Carney's assertion that "...some monetary policy easing will likely be required over the summer" is a clear signal that an interest rate cut is in the pipeline. But easing likely will be modest, due to the much higher outlook for inflation following sterling's precipitous decline.

20 Oct. 2015 Inflation Rebound to Force MPC's Hand, Even if Recovery Slows (My Publications)

The consensus view on the Monetary Policy Committee, that it will take two years for CPI inflation to return to the 2% target, looks complacent. Leading indicators suggest that price pressures will return faster than both policymakers and markets expect. Interest rates are therefore likely to rise in the first half of 2016, even if the recovery loses momentum.

8 May 2017 Inflation Report Likely to Reaffirm Slim Chances of a 2017 Rate Hike (My Publications)

This week's MPC meeting and Inflation Report likely will support the dominant view in markets that the chances of a 2017 rate hike are remote, even though inflation will rise further above the 2% target over the coming months. Overnight index swap markets currently are pricing-in only a 20% chance of an increase in Bank Rate this year.

9 May. Inflation Report Forecasts Likely to Be Overshadowed by Brexit Risks (My Publications)

This week's Inflation Report--now released alongside the MPC's decision and minutes of its meeting in a deluge of releases now known as "Super Thursday"--is likely to be a damp squib.

14 November. 2016 Britain Will Not Lead the Way With Fiscal Stimulus (My Publications)

Expectations are running high that the Autumn Statement on November 23 will mark the beginning of a more active role for fiscal policy in stimulating the economy. The MPC's abandonment of its former easing bias earlier this month has put the stimulus ball firmly in the new Chancellor's court.

14 June. Higher Inflation to Highlight Broad Recovery in Cost Pressures (My Publications)

We expect today's consumer prices figures to show that CPI inflation picked up to 0.5% in May, from 0.3% in April, exceeding the 0.4% rate anticipated by both the consensus and the MPC, in last month's Inflation Report. We expect the increase to be driven by a jump in the core rate to 1.4%, from 1.2% in April.

8 February 2017 Housing Market Flagging Again as Income Squeeze Intensifies (My Publications)

The MPC's interest rate cut in August, and the continued willingness of banks to lend, bolstered the housing market immediately after the referendum. But the latest indicators suggest that the market is slowing again, as the financial pressures on households' incomes intensify.

7 November. 2016 Is Sterling Now Back on a Sustained Recovery Path? (My Publications)

Upbeat PMIs, the MPC's abandonment of its easing bias and the High Court ruling that only a parliamentary vote--and not the Prime Minister--can trigger Article 50, all helped sterling to make up some lost ground last week.

5 September. 2016 Is a Further Rate Cut no Longer a Done Deal? (My Publications)

The run of consensus-beating activity measures and the pickup in leading indicators of inflation have led markets to doubt that the MPC really will follow up August's package of stimulus measures with another Bank Rate cut this year.

6 January 2017 Are Markets Complacent About the Chances of a 2017 Rate Hike? (My Publications)

Investors have treated the upbeat message of the Markit/CIPS PMIs this week with caution and continue to think that the chance that the MPC will raise interest rates this year is remote. Overnight index swap rates currently are pricing-in just a one-in-four chance of a 25 basis point increase in Bank Rate in 2017.

7 July 2017 Production Likely Jumped in May, but Q2 GDP Still Will b e Soft (My Publications)

Markets likely will be particularly sensitive to May's industrial production and construction output figures, released today, as they will provide a guide to the strength of the preliminary estimate of Q2 GDP, released shortly before the MPC's key meeting on August 3.

14 June 2017 The Squeeze on Real Wages is Intensifying Rapidly (My Publications)

CPI inflation increased to 2.9% in May, from 2.7% in April, exceeding the no-change expectation of both the consensus and the MPC, as well as our own 2.8% forecast.

14 July 2017 The Unwinding of QE Remains a Long Way Off (My Publications)

In an interview with The Times yesterday, MPC member Ian McCafferty--who voted to raise interest rates in June--suggested he also might favour starting to run down the Bank's £435B s tock of gilt purchases soon.

10 Nov. 2015 Ignore the Myths About Monetary Policy Turning Points (My Publications)

Some commentators have asserted that the Monetary Policy Committee won't raise interest rates until all its members agree and investors have fully priced in an increase, arguing that an earlier move would create excessive market turmoil and muddy the Committee's message. But a look back to previous turning points in the interest rate cycle suggests that the Monetary Policy Committee--MPC--hasn't paid much heed to those considerations before.

1 February 2017 Sharp Slowdown in Money Growth Consistent with Weaker 2017 GDP (My Publications)

December's money data brought clear signs that the economy's growth spurt in the second half of 2016 is about to come to an abrupt end. Growth in households' money holdings and borrowing slowed sharply in December, and the pick-up in corporate borrowing shortly after the MPC cut interest rates and announced corporate bond purchases, in August, has run out of steam already.

04 Feb. 2016 Inflation Report Unlikely to Support the Markets' Dovish Pricing (My Publications)

The recent slide in market interest rates suggests investors expect the Monetary Policy Committee--MPC--to strike a dovish note today, when the decision and minutes of this week's meeting are released and the Inflation Report is published, at 12.00 GMT.

25 Jan. 2016 Will Housing Debt Concerns Resurface at the Bank? (My Publications)

Data this week look set to emphasise that heat is returning to the housing market, again. The Financial Policy Committee--FPC--still has additional tools it could deploy to cool housing demand. But the root cause of surging house prices remains very cheap debt. Alongside the inflation risk posed by the labour market, the case for the MPC to begin to raise interest rates to prevent a widespread debt problem is becoming compelling.

11 July 2017 Unemployment Likely Fell Again in May, Despite the Slowing Economy (My Publications)

May's labour market figures, released on Wednesday, likely will have something for both the doves and the hawks on the MPC , who have been wrangling over whether to reverse last year's rate cut.

12 May 2017 Rates Hikes Still Distant, Even if Brexit Transition Occurs Smoothly (My Publications)

The absence of a hawkish slant to the MPC's Inflation Report or the minutes of its meeting suggest that an increase in interest rates remains a long way off.

14 Apr. Markets' Long-term Rate View is Plausible - Short-term Call is Not (My Publications)

At today's MPC meeting, the centre of gravity of the policy debate is likely to shift towards the merits of raising interest rates, rather than cutting them. CPI inflation rose from 0.3% in February to 0.5% in March, one tenth above the MPC's forecast in February's Inflation Report.

13 June 2017 May's Inflation Figures Likely Will Bring Another Upside Surprise (My Publications)

May's consumer price figures, released today, will provide the first clean inflation read for three months, following the distortions created by this year's late Easter. Consensus forecasts and the MPC have underestimated CPI inflation regularly since the middle of last year, when the impact of sterling's depreciation began to push into the data.

12 May. Carney Unlikely to Fuel Post-Brexit Rate Cut Speculation (My Publications)

The renewed fall in market interest rates and sterling this month indicates that markets expect the MPC to strike a dovish note at midday, when the Inflation Report is published, alongside the rate decision and minutes of this week's meeting.

16 June. Rising Wage Growth Points to a Rate Hike Before Year End (My Publications)

The MPC almost certainly will keep interest rates on hold today and likely won't give a strong steer on the outlook for policy in the minutes of its meeting, which are released at mid-day. On the whole, surveys of economic activity have been weak, indicating that GDP growth has slowed sharply in the second quarter.

05 Feb. 2016 Inflation Report Indicates Rate Hike Not as Distant as Markets Think (My Publications)

The "Super Thursday" releases from the Monetary Policy Committee--MPC--indicate that financial market turbulence and the approaching E.U. referendum have kiboshed the chances of an interest rate rise in the first half of this year. Nonetheless, the MPC's forecasts clearly imply that it expects to raise rates much sooner than markets currently anticipate, and the Governor signalled that a rate cut isn't under active consideration.

28 June. 2016 Will Higher Inflation Keep Further Monetary Easing at Bay? (My Publications)

The Chancellor indicated yesterday that the current fiscal plans--which set out a 1% of GDP reduction in the structural budget deficit this year--will remain in place until a new Prime Minister is chosen by September 2. So for now, the burden of leaning against the imminent downturn is on the MPC's shoulders.

28 October. 2016 Markets Are Complacent About the Chances of Another Rate Cut (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of Q3 GDP, showing quarter-on-quarter growth slowing only to 0.5% from 0.7% in Q2, has kiboshed the chance that the MPC cuts Bank Rate next Thursday.

26 July. 2016 What Impact Would QE Have on Gilt Yields? (My Publications)

We think that the higher inflation outlook means that the MPC will dash hopes of unconventional stimulus on August 4 and instead will opt only to cut Bank Rate to 0.25%, from 0.50% currently. The minutes of July's MPC meeting show, however, that the MPC is mulling all the options. As a result, it is worth reviewing how a QE programme might be designed and what impact it might have on bond yields.

20 March 2017 February's Above-Target Inflation Rate won't be the Last (My Publications)

February's consumer price report, released tomorrow, likely will show that CPI inflation has breached the MPC's 2% target for the first time since November 2013. Indeed, we think the headline rate jumped to 2.2%, from 1.8% in January, exceeding the 2.1% rate expected by the MPC and the consensus.

20 September 2017 August Retail Sales to Confirm Consumption Still Weak in Q3 (My Publications)

August's retail sales figures, released today, look set to show that growth in consumers' spending has remained subpar in Q3, casting doubt over whether the MPC will conclude that the economy can cope with a rate hike this year.

21 November. 2016 How Vulnerable are the Public Finances to Rising Gilt Yields? (My Publications)

Gilt yields have shot up over the last couple of months, despite ongoing bond purchases authorised by the MPC in August. Ten-year yields closed last week at 1.47%, in line with the average in the first half of 2016.

16 Nov. 2015 Ignore the Hysteria if Inflation Eased Further in October (My Publications)

October's consumer price figures, to be released tomorrow, look set to show CPI inflation easing to -0.2%, from -0.1%, below the no-change consensus and the lowest rate since March 1960. No doubt this will spark more hyperbolic headlines about the U.K.'s descent into pernicious deflation; ignore them. October's print will almost certainly represent the nadir and we think it will take only a year for CPI inflation to return to the MPC's 2% target.

23 September 2016 Is Quantitative Easing Already a Spent Force? (My Publications)

The MPC must be very disappointed by the impact of its £60B government bond purchase programme. Gilt yields initially fell, but they now have returned to the levels seen shortly before the MPC's August meeting, when the purchases were announced.

22 August. 2016 Will Inflation be the Dog That Doesn't Bark, Again? (My Publications)

The period of surprisingly low inflation following sterling's plunge when the UK left the Exchange Rate Mechanism in September 1992 appears to challenge our view that inflation will overshoot the MPC's 2% target over the next couple of years. As our first chart shows, CPI inflation averaged just 2.5% in 1993 and 2% in 1994, even though trade-weighted sterling plunged by 15% and import prices surged.

21 September 2017 August's Jump in Retail Sales Just Looks Like a Flash in the Pan (My Publications)

Retail sales increased by 1.0% month-to-month in August, exceeding our no-change forecast and spurring markets to price-in a 65% chance that the MPC will raise interest rates at its next meeting on November 2, up from 60% beforehand.

19 July. 2016 Inflation Pick-Up Likely Restarted in June and Will Gather Pace Soon (My Publications)

CPI inflation has been extremely stable this year, only breaking away from 0.3% in March due to the shift in the timing of Easter. June, however, should mark the beginning of a sustained upward trend in inflation, fuelled by rising prices for imports, raw materials and labour. Indeed, we think CPI inflation is on course to hit 3% in 2017, ensuring that the MPC provides additional stimulus only cautiously.

29 June 2017 A Single Rate Hike Would Risk a Harmful Rise in Rate Expectations (My Publications)

The MPC's hawks are framing the interest rate increase they want as a "withdrawal of part of the stimulus that the Committee had injected in August last year", arguing that monetary policy still would be "very supportive" if rates rose to 0.5%, from 0.25%.

30 January 2017 Will the Inflation Report Support Markets' 2017 Rate Hike View? (My Publications)

Markets' expectations for official interest rates have shifted up over the last fortnight, and the consensus view now is that the MPC will hike rates before the end of this year. As our first chart shows, the implied probability of interest rates breaching 0.25% in December 2017 now slightly exceeds 50%.

30 June 2017 Q1 National Accounts Won't Meet the Governor's Rate Hike Criteria (My Publications)

Markets will be extremely sensitive to economic data in the run-up to the MPC's next meeting on August 3, following signals from several Committee members that they think the cas e for a rate rise has strengthened.

31 July 2017 The Inflation Report Likely Won't Boost 2017 Rate Hike Odds (My Publications)

The pullback in CPI inflation in June and continued slow GDP growth in Q2 mean that the MPC almost certainly will keep Bank Rate at 0.25% on Thursday.

18 September 2017 How Severely Would a Rate Hike Slow the Economy? (My Publications)

The MPC took an unprecedented step last week to pave the way for an interest rate rise.

19 July 2017 CPI Inflation Still is set to Exceed 3% this Year, Despite June's Pullback (My Publications)

The fall in CPI inflation to 2.6% in June, from 2.9% in May, greatly undershot expectations for an unchanged rate and it has made a vote by the MPC to keep interest rates at 0.25% in August a near certainty.

18 Dec. 2015 Sterling Still a Major Constraint on Growth, Despite Its Recent Decline (My Publications)

The growing perception that the U.K. MPC will lag further behind the U.S. Fed in this tightening cycle than previously has pushed sterling down to $1.49, a long way below its post-recession peak of $1.72 in mid-2014. But this has done little to enhance the overall competitiveness of U.K. exports, and net trade still looks likely to exert a major drag on real GDP growth in 2016.

17 October. 2016 Rising Inflation in 2017 Will Reflect More Than Just Import Prices (My Publications)

The MPC's forecast in August, which predicted that inflation would overshoot its 2% target over the next two years only modestly--giving it the green light to ease policy--assumed that inflation in sectors insensitive to swings in import prices would remain low. We doubt, however, that domestically generated inflation will remain benign.

17 March 2017 Weak Wage Numbers will Continue to Stymie the MPC's Hawks (My Publications)

The minutes of March's MPC meeting were more newsworthy than we--and the markets--expected. Kristin Forbes broke ranks and voted to raise Bank Rate to 0.50%, from 0.25%.

14 September Weak Wage Figures Point to a Less Hawkish MPC than Markets Expect (My Publications)

Investors anticipate a shift up in the MPC's hawkish rhetoric today. After August's consumer price figures showed CPI inflation rising to 2.9%--0.2 percentage points above the Committee's forecast--the market implied probabilities of a rate hike by the November and February meetings jumped to 35% and 60%, respectively, from 20% and 40%.

27 April 2017 How Much Further Can Mortgage Rates Fall? (My Publications)

Growth in households' disposable incomes has been supported in recent years by falling debt servicing costs. The proportion of households' incomes absorbed by interest payments fell to a record low of 4.5% in Q4 last year, down from 4.7% a year ago and a peak of 10% in 2008.

28 July. 2016 Acceleration of Q2 GDP Won't Have Much Bearing on Stimulus Debate (My Publications)

Taken at face value, the preliminary estimate of Q2 GDP suggests that the economic recovery weathered Brexit risk well. But growth received support from some unsustainable sources, and also probably was boosted by a calendar quirk. Meanwhile, with few firms or consumers expecting a vote for Brexit prior to the referendum, Q2's brisk growth tells us little about how well the economy will cope in the current climate of heightened uncertainty.

26 September 2016 Is the Markets' Pessimism About Long-Term Rates Warranted? (My Publications)

The bond market has become extremely pessimistic about the long-term economic outlook following Britain's vote to leave the EU. Forward rates imply that the gilt markets' expectation for official interest rates in 20 years' time has shifted down to just 2%, from 3% at the start of 2016.

26 July 2017 Preliminary GDP to Confirm Growth Remained Sluggish in Q2 (My Publications)

Today's preliminary estimate of GDP likely will show that the economy continued to struggle in response to high inflation, further fiscal austerity and Brexit uncertainty.

27 January 2017 GDP Growth Will Slow This Year as Consumers Retrench (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of GDP showed that the economy finished 2016 on a strong note. Output increased by 0.6% quarter-on-quarter, the same rate as in the previous two quarters. The year-over-year growth rate of GDP in 2016 as a whole--2.0%--was low by pre-crisis standards, but it likely puts the U.K. at the top of the G7 growth leaderboard. We cannot tell how well the economy would have performed had the U.K. not voted to leave the EU in June, but clearly the threat of Brexit has not loomed large over the economy.

28 July 2017 The Downturn in Housing Market Activity has Further to Run (My Publications)

Equity prices for companies dependent on the U.K.'s residential property market tumbled yesterday as several companies reported poor results for the first half of 2017. Most companies blamed a decline in housing transactions for falling profits.

28 April 2017 Preliminary GDP Estimate Likely to Reveal Q1 Slowdown (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of Q1 GDP looks set to show that the economy started 2017 on a weak footing. We share the consensus view that quarter-on-quarter GDP growth slowed to 0.4%, from 0.7% in Q4.

27 October. 2016 GDP Set to Exceed the Consensus in Q3, But Underwhelm Thereafter (My Publications)

Today's preliminary estimate of Q3 GDP looks set to indicate that the Brexit vote has had little detrimental impact on the economy so far.

28 Jan. 2016 Preliminary GDP Likely to Provide Another Downside Surprise (My Publications)

We expect today's preliminary estimate of Q4 GDP growth to surprise the consensus to the downside, underscoring our view that the economic recovery has shifted down to a much slower gear.

27 June 2017 Higher Interest Rates won't be Needed to Rein in Consumer Credit (My Publications)

Speculation has grown that the Bank of England will announce measures today to calm the recent strong growth in consumer credit, when it publishes its bi-annual Financial Stability Report.

25 September 2017 Has Sterling's Rally Now Run Its Course? (My Publications)

The speed of sterling's rally this month has caught us by surprise.

24 August. 2016 The Impetus to Spending From Falling Mortgage Rates Will Wane (My Publications)

The proportion of households' annual incomes absorbed by servicing debt has declined steadily this decade, providing a powerful boost to spending. Indeed, the proportion of annual incomes accounted for by interest payments--mainly on mortgages--edged down a record low of 4.6% in Q1, less than half the share in 2008.

23 March 2017 February Retail Sales Likely to Confirm Consumer Slowdown (My Publications)

Under normal circumstances, we would expect today's retail sales figures to reveal that volumes rebounded in February, following the 2.7% fall over the previous three months. But the continued weakness of spending surveys suggests that we should brace for another soft report.

28 Oct. 2015 Q3 Slowdown Marks the Start of a Sustained Softening (My Publications)

Markets responded to yesterday's disappointing GDP figures by pushing back expectations for the first rise in official interest rates even further into 2017. The first rate hike is now expected--by the overnight index swap market--in April 2017, two months later than anticipated before the GDP release. The figures certainly look weak--particularly when you scratch below the surface--and we expect growth to slow further over the coming quarters. But we don't agree they imply an even longer period of inaction on the Monetary Policy Committee.

23 Mar. Inflation Still Set to Rebound Soon, Despite Stability in February (My Publications)

CPI inflation remained at 0.3% in February, below the consensus, 0.4%, and our own expectation, 0.5%. All the unexpected weakness, however, was in food and core goods prices, and past movements in commodity and import prices suggest that this will be fleeting

22 September 2017 Don't Expect a Giveaway Budget, Despite low Borrowing this year (My Publications)

Public borrowing was below consensus expectations in August, fuelling speculation that the Chancellor might pare back the remaining fiscal tightening in the Autumn Budget on November 22.

22 May 2017 The Housing Market is Weakening, but Lasting Price Falls aren't Likely (My Publications)

Even the most bullish estate agent in Britain would struggle to put a positive spin on the latest housing market news. The latest levels of the official, Nationwide, and Halifax measures of house prices all are below their peaks.

24 Feb. 2016 Downside Surprise from Fourth- Quarter GDP Likely (My Publications)

The second estimate of Q4 GDP, published on Thursday, probably will show that the economy slowed more abruptly last year than previously thought and that it has become very dependent on consumers for momentum.

24 July 2017 High Inflation Won't Last as Long as Markets Expect (My Publications)

After pricing-in the consequences of sterling's depreciation for inflation last year only slowly, markets are at risk of costly inertia again.

25 August. 2016 Weak Mortgage Approvals Point to Falling House Prices Ahead (My Publications)

July's mortgage approvals data from the BBA brought clear evidence that households have held off making major financial commitments as a result of the Brexit vote. Following a 5% month-to-month fall in June, approvals fell a further 5.3% in July, leaving them at their lowest level since January 2015 and down 19% year-over-year.

25 July 2017 Will the Participation Rate Continue to Defy Gravity? (My Publications)

The participation rate--the proportion of people either in or looking for work--has held steady over the last decade, despite the ageing of the population and the rise in student numbers.

25 Apr. Preliminary GDP Data to Confirm Q1 Slowdown (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of first quarter GDP likely will confirm that the economic recovery lost considerable pace in early 2016. Bedlam in financial markets in January and business fears over the E.U. referendum are partly responsible for the slowdown. The deceleration, however, also reflects tighter fiscal policy, uncompetitive exports, and the economy running into supply-side constraints.

24 May. Sterling's Rally After a "Bremain" Vote Will Fall Flat (My Publications)

Sterling is well below its $1.57 average of the last five years, despite rallying this month to about $1.45, from a low of $1.38 in late February. But hopes that cable will bounce back to its previous levels, after a vote to remain in the E .U., likely will be dashed.

24 June. Initial Thoughts on the U.K.'s Shock Brexit Vote (My Publications)

Britain's shock vote to leave the E.U. has unleashed a wave of economic and political uncertainty that likely will drive the U.K. into recession.

25 July. 2016 Should We Believe the Downbeat PMI? (My Publications)

Last week's news that the composite PMI collapsed to 47.7 in July--its lowest level since April 2009--from 52.4 in June is the first clear indication that the U.K. is heading for a recession.

5 July 2017 The Consumer Slowdown will Ripple out to the Services Sector Soon (My Publications)

The slowdown in quarter-on-quarter growth in households' real spending to 0.4% in Q1--just half 2016's average rate--was driven entirely by a 0.1% fall in purchases of goods. Households' spending on services, by contrast, continued to grow briskly. Indeed, the 0.8% quarter-on-quarter rise in households' real spending on services exceeded 2016's average 0.5% rate.

7 April 2017 What Place will QE have in the Bank's Future Policy Mix? (My Publications)

Markets were jolted yesterday by news that the U.S. Fed is mulling ending, or at least slowing, the reinvestment of Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities later this year. Such a move would reduce liquidity in global markets that has underpinned soaring equity prices in recent years.

8 August. 2016 The Term Funding Scheme is Not a Game-Changer (My Publications)

Economists failed to foresee the U.K.'s growth spurt in 2013 partly because they underestimated the positive impact of the Funding for Lending Scheme, launched in mid-2012. In fact, the FLS was so successful at stimulating mortgage lending that it had to be "refocussed" to apply solely to business lending in January 2014.

6 Nov. 2015 Markets Ignore Inflation Report's Hawkish Undertones (My Publications)

Markets have interpreted the Monetary Policy Committee's "Super Thursday" releases as an endorsement of their view that interest rates will remain on hold for another year. We think the Committee's communications were more nuanced and believe the door is still open to an interest rate rise in the second quarter of next year.

6 March 2017 Can Gilt Yields Remain Low While the World Reflates? (My Publications)

If 2017 really is the year of "reflation", somebody forgot to tell the gilt market. Among the G7 group, 10-year yields have fallen only in the U.K. during the last three months, as our first chart shows.

6 July 2017 Sluggish Growth and Slowing Price Rises Undermine Rate Hike Case (My Publications)

Investors have stuck to their view that interest rates are just as likely to rise this year as not, despite the soft round of PMIs released this week.

22 June. Fiscal and Monetary Policy Won't Come to the Rescue After a Brexit (My Publications)

The Chancellor warned last week that he would hold an Emergency Budget shortly after a vote to leave the E.U. to address a £30B black hole in the public finances. The £30B--some 1.6% of GDP-- is the mid-point of the Institute for Fiscal Studies' estimates of the impact of Brexit on public borrowing in 2019/20, which were based on the GDP forecasts of a range of reports.

8 Dec. 2015 Productivity Growth Still too Weak to Prevent Inflation Rebound (My Publications)

By any yardstick, U.K. productivity growth has been terrible in recent years. Output per hour exceeded its pre-recession peak only in the second quarter of 2015, and it has grown at an average annual rate of just 0.6% this decade. U.S. productivity growth has been equally dismal since 2010. But the U.K.'s performance is more worrying, because the productivity slump during the recession suggested scope for a period of catch-up. In the U.S., by contrast, productivity surged during the recession as firms cut headcount sharply.

9 January 2017 Will Sterling Take a Further Pounding in 2017? (My Publications)

Sterling was the worst performing G10 currency in 2016 and most analysts anticipate further weakness in 2017. The cost of purchasing downside protection for sterling over the next year also continues to exceed upside protection, as our first chart shows.

9 March 2017 The Chancellor Sticks to Plans for an Intense Fiscal Tightening (My Publications)

The Chancellor lived up to his reputation for fiscal conservatism yesterday and is pressing ahead with a tough fiscal tightening. He hopes that this will create scope to loosen policy if the economy struggles after the U.K. leaves the EU in 2019, but we remain concerned his "fiscal headroom" will be much smaller than he currently anticipates.

8 September. 2016 Evidence of the Inefficacy of Monetary Stimulus Mounts (My Publications)

Evidence that households are not benefiting much from the Monetary Policy Committee's easing measures mounted yesterday, after the release of August data on advertised borrowing rates. Our first chart shows the drop in swap rates and average quoted mortgage rates since the end of last year.

8 March 2017 Rising Interest Payments may Slash the Chancellor's Rainy Day Fund (My Publications)

The Chancellor's Budget today looks set to prioritise retaining scope to loosen policy if the economy struggles in future, rather than reducing the near-term fiscal tightening. In November, the OBR predicted that cyclically-adjusted borrowing would fall to 0.8% of GDP in 2019/20, comfortably below the 2% limit stipulated by the Chancellor's new fiscal rules.

9 Nov. 2015 The Unemployment Rate Is the Key Measure of Labour Market Slack (My Publications)

The Monetary Policy Committee continues to assert that it can leave interest rates at rock-bottom levels, even though the unemployment rate has returned to its pre-recession level, because it understates the extent of slack in the labour market. If that hypothesis were correct, however, the relationship between the unemployment rate and wage growth would have weakened. But this clearly has not happened, as our first chart shows.

6 February 2017 Growth Indicators Start to Turn Down as Price Pressures Escalate (My Publications)

The run of above-consensus news on the U.K. economy came to an abrupt end last week, as a series of survey indicators for January took a turn for the worse. After six months of breathing space, the economic consequences of the Brexit vote are increasingly being felt.

6 April 2017 GDP Growth Likely Slowed in Q1, Despite The Rising Services PMI (My Publications)

The rise in Markit/CIPS services PMI to 55.0 in March, from 53.3 in February, brings some relief that GDP growth has not stalled in Q1, following manufacturing and construction surveys that signalled near-stagnation.

3 May. How Far Would Sterling Fall if Britain Chose Brexit? (My Publications)

Most of the time, sterling broadly tracks a path implied by the difference between markets' expectations for interest rates in the U.K. and overseas. During the financial crisis, however, sterling fell much further than interest rate differentials implied, as our first chart shows.

30 August 2017 Six Reasons why a Soft Brexit now is more Likely than Ever (My Publications)

Six developments over the summer have increased the likelihood that the government will make concessions required to preserve unfettered access to the single market after formally leaving the EU in March 2019.

3 June. Brexit Would Hit All Sterling Asset Values, Gilts Included (My Publications)

On the face of it, the outperformance of gilts compared to government bonds in other developed countries this year suggests that Brexit would be a boon for the gilt market. In the event of an exit, however, we think that the detrimental impact of higher gilt issuance, rising risk premia and weaker overseas demand would overwhelm the beneficial influence of stronger domestic demand for safe-haven assets, pushing gilt yields higher.

3 January 2017 Slowing Real Income Growth Will Define the 2017 U.K. Economy (My Publications)

The U.K. economy retained its momentum last year, despite the seismic shock of the vote to leave the EU. Quarter-on-quarter GDP growth averaged 0.5% in the first three quarters of 2016, matching 2015's rate and the average pace of growth across the Atlantic.

29 September 2016 What to Look Out for During Friday's Data Deluge (My Publications)

The estimate of services output for the first month of the current quarter usually gets lost among the deluge of national accounts and balance of payments data released for the previous quarter.

30 March 2017 Money Data Highlight the Weak Start to 2017 (My Publications)

February's money and credit figures supported recent labour market and retail sales data suggesting that consumers are increasingly financially strained. Households' broad money holdings increased by just 0.2% month-to-month in February, half the average pace of the previous six months.

31 August 2017 Does the Corporate Borrowing Surge Signal a Capex Recovery? (My Publications)

The summer usually is a quiet time for business, but seemingly not for CFOs this year. Yesterday's money and credit figures from the Bank of England showed that borrowing by private non-financial corporations has rocketed. Net finance raised by PNFC's from all sources increased by £8.9B in July, compared to an average increase of just £2.5B in the previous 12 months.

6 Apr. Britain's Happy Period of Strong Growth and Low Inflation is Over (My Publications)

The latest PMIs have added to the weight of evidence that the economic recovery has lost momentum this year. The prevailing view in markets, however, that the Monetary Policy Committee is more likely to cut--rather than raise--interest rates this year continues to look misplaced because inflation pressure is building.

5 May 2017 Surveys Signal a Solid Start to Q2, but "Hard" Data Remain Weak (My Publications)

Activity surveys picked up across the board in April, offering hope that the slowdown in GDP growth--to just 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in Q1-- will be just a blip. The headline indicators of surveys from the CBI, European Commission, Lloyds Bank and Markit all improved in April and all exceeded their 2004-to-2016 averages.

4 September 2017 Will the Economy be Hit by a Snap Back in Households' Saving Ratio? (My Publications)

Households' decision to reduce their saving rate sharply was the main reason why economic growth exceeded forecasters' expectations in the aftermath of the Brexit vote.

31 August. 2016 Cheaper Borrowing Costs Won't Reignite Firms' Investment Appetite (My Publications)

July's money and credit figures provided more evidence that firms have become reluctant to invest following the Brexit vote. Lending by U.K. banks to private non-financial companies--PNFCs--rose by just 0.2% month-to-month in July, below the average 0.5% increase of the previous six months.

29 July. 2016 Will Household Saving Rise and Tip the Economy into Recession? (My Publications)

Households' saving decisions will play a key role in determining whether the economy slips into recession over the next year. Indeed, all of the last three recessions coincided with sharp rises in the household saving rate, as our first chart shows. Will households save more in response to greater economic uncertainty?

15 August. 2016 July Inflation Figures to Show Adverse Brexit Impact (My Publications)

July's consumer price figures, due tomorrow, likely will bring early evidence that sterling's Brexit-driven depreciation already is pushing up inflation. We think that CPI inflation picked up to 0.6% in July from 0.5% in June, exceeding the consensus forecast for an unchanged reading. Experience of past depreciations suggests that July's figures likely won't be the last time the consensus is surprised by the speed of the rise in inflation.

12 October. 2016 The Rise in Gilt Yields Won't Run Out of Steam (My Publications)

Gilt yields have risen sharply over the last month, even though the Monetary Policy Committee is just one-third of the way through the £60B bond purchase programme announced in August. Government bond yields in other G7 economies also have increased, but not as much as in Britain.

12 July 2017 Wage Growth Likely will Remain too "Anaemic" for the Governor this Year (My Publications)

Mark Carney emphasised in his Mansion House speech last month that he wants wage growth to "begin to firm" from recent "anaemic" rates before voting to raise interest rates.

12 August. 2016 Have Gilt Yields Finally Reached Their Floor? (My Publications)

Gilt yields have collapsed this year, aided by a surge in safe-haven demand, the much lower outlook for overnight interest rates and the resumption of QE. Bond yields also have fallen globally, but the drop in the ten-year gilt yields to a record low of 0.53%, from nearly 2% at the beginning of 2016, has greatly exceeded the declines elsewhere, as our first chart shows.

11 May 2017 Will the Inflation Report Waken the Gilt Market from its Slumber? (My Publications)

Gilt yields have been remarkably stable following their decline in response to the Bank of England's Inflation Report in February. The average 60-day price volatility of gilts with outstanding maturities of greater than one year has fallen back recently to lows last seen in 2014, as our first chart shows.

12 September 2017 CPI Inflation Likely Leapt in August and is Still Set to Peak at 3% Soon (My Publications)

The upward trend in CPI inflation likely reasserted itself in August, following a hiatus in the last two months due to the decline in oil prices.

22 August 2017 Don't Hold Your Breath for Euro-Sterling Parity (My Publications)

Sterling's renewed depreciation to just €1.10--just below last year's nadir--has fuelled speculation that it could reach parity against the euro within the next year.

14 December 2016 Labour Data Set to Show a Clearer Deteriorating Trend (My Publications)

Today's labour market figures likely will bring further signs that firms are recruiting more cautiously and limiting pay awards, due to still-elevated economic uncertainty.

14 Dec. 2015 November Data Will Mark the First Step in Inflation's Long March Up (My Publications)

November's consumer prices figures, released tomorrow, look set to show that the U.K.'s spell of negative inflation has ended. CPI inflation is set to pick-up decisively over the coming months, even if oil prices continue to drift down. In fact, fuel prices likely will contribute to the pick-up in inflation from October's -0.1% rate. November's 1.5% fall in prices at the pump was smaller than the 2.3% drop in the same month last year, so the year-over-year rate will rise. Fuel's contribution to CPI inflation therefore will pick up, albeit very marginally, to -0.47pp from -0.50pp in October.

13 September 2017 Labour Market Report to Show no Easing of the Real Wage Squeeze (My Publications)

Today's labour market report likely will show that employment continued to grow briskly over the summer, but that wage gains still are lagging well behind inflation.

10 October. 2016 The Sterling Crisis has Tied Policymakers' Hands (My Publications)

The U.K.'s dependence on large inflows of external finance was laid alarmingly b are last week, when "hard" Brexit talk by politicians caused overseas investors to give sterling assets a wide berth. Investors now are demanding extra compensation for holding U.K. assets, because the medium-term outlook is so uncertain.

10 March 2017 Don't Take the Public Borrowing Forecasts at Face Value (My Publications)

Investors in the gilt market would be wise not to take the new official projections for borrowing and debt issuance at face value. The forecast for the Government's gross financing requirement between 2017/18 and 2021/22 was lowered to £625B in the Budget, from £646B in the Autumn Statement.

03 Feb. 2016 Would a Renminbi Depreciation Derail the Pick-up in U.K. Inflation? (My Publications)

Investors are increasingly anxious that an intentional sharp devaluation of the renminbi, aiming to combat China's slowdown, might lead to prolonged deflation in the West, particularly in an economy as open as the U.K.

02 Mar. 2016 The Manufacturing PMI Shows that the U.K.'s Slowdown is Homegrown (My Publications)

Further compelling signs that the U.K. has lost its status as one of the fastest growing advanced economies were presented by the Markit/CIPS manufacturing survey, released yesterday. The PMI fell in February to 50.8--its lowest level since April 2013--from 52.9 in January.

01 Mar. 2016 Rising Consumer Debt Puts Pressure on the Bank to Act (My Publications)

British households are back to their old ways and are piling on debt again. With borrowing costs still falling, consumer confidence high and banks willing to lend, indebtedness will only increase unless the Bank of England acts.

01 Feb. 2016 Inflation Report Likely to Nudge Markets to Expect an Earlier Hike (My Publications)

With financial markets still turbulent and the Governor stating only two weeks ago that economic conditions do not yet justify a rate hike, the Inflation Report on Thursday will not signal imminent action. Nonetheless, higher medium-term forecasts for inflation are likely to imply that the Committee still envisions raising interest rates this year.

03 October. 2016 The Economy's Near-Term Resilience Has Brittle Foundations (My Publications)

Last week's official data unequivocally indicated that the Brexit vote has not had a detrimental impact on the economy yet.

06 October. 2016 Steady Growth in the Services Sector Undermines Rate Cut Case (My Publications)

September's Markit/CIPS services survey added to the evidence indicating that GDP growth softened, rather than fell off a cliff, in the third quarter. The activity index edged down only to 52.6, from 52.9 in August.

1 June 2017 Money Data Suggest Q1's Slowdown Won't be Short-lived (My Publications)

April's money and credit figures suggest that GDP growth has remained sluggish in Q2. Households' broad money holdings increased by just 0.3% month-to-month in April.

1 August 2017 Money Data Show Diverging Household and Corporate Fortunes (My Publications)

The latest money and credit data highlight that the financial fortunes of firms and households have begun to differ markedly. Private non- financial corporations--PNFCs--are enjoying strong growth in their broad money holdings. The 1.2% month-to-month increase in PNFC's M4 was the largest rise since August 2016, and it lifted the year- over-year growth rate to 9.3%, from 9.0% in May.

09 Feb. 2016 How Robust is the Case for Expecting Lower Rates? (My Publications)

Investors currently think that official interest rates are more likely to fall than rise this year. Overnight index swap markets are factoring in a 30% chance of a rate cut by December, but just a 1% chance of an increase by year-end. The case for expecting looser monetary policy, however, remains unconvincing.

15 Feb. 2016 Stronger CPI Figures to Dispel Fears of Ingrained Deflation (My Publications)

January's consumer price data, released tomorrow, look set to reveal a third consecutive rise in CPI inflation, dampening speculation that the U.K. is stuck in a deflationary funk. Indeed, we think CPI inflation picked up to 0.4%, from 0.2% in December, above the consensus, 0.3%.

13 September 2016 Sterling is Already Stoking Price Pressures, More to Come (My Publications)

August's consumer price figures, released today, likely will show that households' spending power is being increasingly eroded by rising inflation. We think CPI inflation picked up to 0.8%, from 0.6% in July, exceeding the consensus, 0.7%, for the third consecutive month.

15 November. 2016 Inflation Likely Stable in October, but Upward Trend Remains Strong (My Publications)

We expect today's consumer price figures to show that CPI inflation remained at 1.0% in October, after jumping in September from 0.6% in August.

2 Dec. 2015 Is An Interest Rate Cut Just as Likely as a Hike? (My Publications)

Financial markets are pricing in a 20% chance that the Monetary Policy Committee will cut official interest rates during the next six months, broadly the same odds they ascribe to a rate increase. We think the probability of further easing is much slimmer than the market believes.

19 September 2016 Surging Narrow Money Growth is Not a Good Sign (My Publications)

Our view that the economy is slowing sharply appears, superficially, to be challenged by the surge in the money supply. Year-over-year growth in the value of banknotes and coins in circulation has shot up this year, to 8.3% in August, from 5.5% in December 2015.

19 Oct. 2015 Slowdown in Store as Fiscal Policy Tightens and Strong Pound Bites (My Publications)

A powerful cocktail of cheap money, labour and commodities, allowed to infuse by a hiatus in the government's austerity programme, has reinvigorated the U.K. economy over the last three years. But these supports are now weakening while new headwinds are emerging. The U.K. economy is heading for a pronounced slowdown, one that is under-appreciated by most forecasters and under-priced by markets.

2 Nov. 2015 Inflation Report Likely to Jolt Markets Back to Their Senses (My Publications)

It's probably just a coincidence that "Super Thursday" coincides with Guy Fawkes night, when Britons launch fireworks to commemorate an attempt to blow up parliament in 1605. Nonetheless, the Monetary Policy Committee looks likely to light the touch-paper for a big rise in market interest rates and sterling, by signalling that it intends to raise Bank Rate in the Spring, about six months earlier than investors currently expect.

2 November. 2016 Producer Price Rises Will Bear Down on Domestic Demand (My Publications)

October's Markit/CIPS manufacturing survey indicates that producers are not shying away from passing on to their customers the higher costs stemming from sterling's depreciation.

21 June. 2016 Monetary Policy Testimony Won't Signal a Change in Fed Thinking (My Publications)

Back in the dim and increasingly distant past the semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony--previously known as the Humphrey-Hawkins--used to be something of an event. Today's Testimony, however, is most unlikely to change anyone's opinion of the likely pace and timing of Fed action.

21 July 2017 Q2 Consumption will be Weak, Despite the Pickup in Retail Sales (My Publications)

On the face of it, June's retail sales figures suggest that households have splurged in Q2, re-energising GDP growth after its slowdown in Q1. Sales volumes rose by 0.6% month-to-month in June, completing a 1.5% quarter-on-quarter jump in Q2.

21 August 2017 The Peak in CPI Inflation Still Hasn't Been Reached Yet (My Publications)

After soaring in the Spring, inflation has slipped back in the Summer. July's consumer prices report, released while we were away last week, showed that CPI inflation held steady at 2.6% in July, one -tenth below the consensus and three tenths below May's year-to-date peak.

19 June 2017 Forget About Tapering, it's Done. Next, the Quantity Target Will go (My Publications)

The BoJ left its policy levers unchanged at the Monetary Policy Committee meeting on Friday. At the press conference, Governor Kuroda was repeatedly asked about the status of the ¥80T annual asset purchase target and what the exit strategy would be.

2 May 2017 Can Sterling's Recovery Gather More Momentum? (My Publications)

Sterling continued to recover last week, hitting its highest level against the dollar since October, despite a series of data releases indicating that the economy is losing momentum. Indeed, sterling was unscathed by the news on Friday that quarter-on-quarter GDP growth slowed to just 0.3% in Q1, from 0.7% in Q4.

16 Mar. Beware the Contradiction at the Heart of the Fiscal Forecasts (My Publications)

The new fiscal projections in the Budget today likely will be based on implausible economic projections, which assume that wage growth will accelerate soon, lifting inflation, but that interest rates won't rise for three more years. You can coherently forecast one or the other, but not both.

15 September 2016 August Retail Sales to Shatter Picture of Consumer Resilience (My Publications)

Today's retail sales figures for August likely will rebut the widespread view that spendthrift consumers will prevent a sharp economic slowdown. We look for a 1% month-to-month decline in retail sales volumes in August, well below the -0.4% consensus forecast.

18 May. Falling Airline Fares Mask Higher Services Sector Inflation (My Publications)

CPI inflation surprised to the downside in April, falling to 0.3% from 0.5% in March. Both the consensus and ourselves expected the rate to hold steady. Nearly all of the surprise, however, was in airfares and clothing inflation, which were depressed, to a greater extent than we anticipated, by the shift in the timing of Easter and bad weather, respectively.

17 January 2017 Will Policymakers Act to Stop Sterling Falling Further? (My Publications)

Sterling weakened further yesterday as anxiety grew that PM Theresa May will indicate she is seeking a "clean and hard Brexit" in a speech today. This could mean the U.K. leaves the EU's single market and customs union, in order to control immigration, shake off the jurisdiction of the European Court and have a free hand in trade negotiations with other countries.

16 December 2016 Black Friday Sales Boom Likely will be Followed by a Bust (My Publications)

The remarkable recent strength in retail sales continued into November, with total sales volumes rising by 0.2% and sales ex-motor fuels up by 0.5%. Those numbers aren't spectacular but they have to be seen in the context of October's huge 1.9% jump in sales ex-motor fuel; usually, after such a big gain we'd expect a correction the following month.

17 July 2017 CPI Inflation Likely Held Steady in June, but will Exceed 3% Soon (My Publications)

Economists are divided evenly on whether Tuesday's consumer price figures will show that CPI inflation held steady at 2.9% or edged down to 2.8% in June.

17 May. Wage Growth to Continue to Rise, Despite Jobs Slowdown (My Publications)

The 21K rise in the headline, three-month average, unemployment rate between November and February confirmed last month that the U.K.'s period of fantastically strong growth in employment has ended. Timelier indicators, however, suggest unemployment is stabilising, not on the cusp of a major increase.

18 July 2017 Rising Leverage will Prevent House Prices from Falling this year (My Publications)

The slowdown in households' real incomes has taken a swift toll on the housing market this year. Measures of house prices from Nationwide, Halifax, LSL and Rightmove essentially have flatlined since the end of 2016, following four years of rapid growth, as our first chart shows.

17 May 2017 CPI Inflation Still has Further to Climb this Year (My Publications)

The jump in CPI inflation to 2.7% in April, from 2.3% in March, was only partly to a temporary boost from the later timing of Easter this year. Indeed, inflation likely will rise further over the coming months as food, energy and core goods prices all continue to pick up in response to last year's depreciation of sterling.

12 April 2017 Inflation Pressures Remain more Intense than the MPC Expected (My Publications)

CPI inflation held steady at 2.3% in March, as we and the consensus had expected. Nonetheless, the consumer price figures boosted sterling and bond yields, as the details of the report made it clear that inflation is on a very steep upward path.

10 July 2017 Q2 GDP Growth is Set to Fall Short of the MPC's Expectations (My Publications)

Last week's industrial production and construction output figures for May were surprisingly weak. They have compelled us to revise down our expectation for the preliminary estimate of Q2 GDP to 0.2% quarter-on-quarter, from 0.3% previously.

5 May. Mortgage Lending Concerns Will Ensure the MPC Doesn't Cut Rates (My Publications)

Barclays hit the headlines yesterday with an announcement that it is bringing back no-deposit mortgages for first-time buyers and raising its maximum loan-to-income ratio for borrowers with an income of more than £50K to 5.5, from 4.4. With other lenders likely to follow suit and the supply of homes for sale still extremely low, house price inflation likely will remain brisk this year.

26 September 2017 Is the Most Important Data--Wage Growth--Forecastable? (My Publications)

Markets will be hyper-sensitive to U.K. data releases following the MPC's warning that it is on the verge of raising interest rates.

9 November. 2016 Will Wage Growth Keep Up With Rising Inflation? (My Publications)

The strength of the economic recovery next year and the MPC's scope to leave interest rates at ultra-low levels will hinge on whether wage growth picks up in response to rising inflation.

16 February 2017 Slowdown in Wage Growth Further Reduces 2017 Rate Hike Chances (My Publications)

Yesterday's labour market data delivered a further blow to hopes that consumers' spending will retain enough momentum for the MPC to press ahead and raise interest rates this year. The most striking development is the decline in year-over-year growth in average weekly wages to just 1.9% in December, from 2.9% in November.

*August 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Sterling's fall is hurting more than it's helping...Slow GDP and wage growth will keep the MPC inactive

*March 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Consumers are buckling under high inflation...but the MPC won't add to their woes by hiking rates

*September 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The MPC talks up raising bank rate soon...but weak wage growth likely will mean it hesitates

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