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The MPC and consensus still aren't downbeat enough on Q2 GDP; we look for a 0.7% quarter-on-quarter drop.
CPI inflation now looks set to approach 11% in October, driven by further huge rises in food and energy prices...
...But wage growth and inflation expectations haven’t risen, while producer price inflation now is set to plunge.
The first quarter’s rise in GDP has brittle foundations; households have had to retrench in Q2.
The support to GDP growth from restocking will fade; firms now have enough inventory to meet demand.
A recession, however, isn’t likely; households’ real dis- posable incomes will rise in Q3, and capex will recover.
Retail sales volumes continued to decline in May in response to rapidly rising prices.
Consumer confidence deteriorated further in June, but retail sales should start to recover slowly soon...
Real disposable incomes will rise in Q3, thanks to Mr. Sunak’s grants; dis-saving and borrowing will help too.
The composite PMI held steady at 53.1 in June, but it has been misleadingly upbeat in recent months.
It excludes the retail and public sectors, both of which will drag on quarter-on-quarter GDP growth in Q2.
We still forecast a 0.7% q/q drop in Q2 GDP, and only a 25bp increase in Bank Rate in August.
Core CPI inflation declined to 5.9% in May, from 6.2% in April, and will fall further in June.
Retailers are shrinking their margins, rather than passing on surging producer prices fully to consumers.
Faltering demand will constrain future core price rises, enabling the MPC to stop its hiking cycle this year.
Estimates of the distribution of savings can be derived by reconciling data from a few ONS surveys.
Our calculations suggest households in the top 10% of the income distribution hold 25% of the excess savings.
The current wave of rail strikes do not meaningfully increase the risk of a recession this year.
Year-over-year growth in private-sector wages slowed to 4.7% in April, slightly below the MPC’s 4.8% forecast.
The job market no longer is tightening, as the workforce recovers and growth in employment starts to slow.
We still expect the workforce to recover further, anchoring wage growth and easing the pressure for rate hikes.
April's fall in GDP was driven by Covid spending, but flat private sector GDP caused the downside surprise.
Consumer services firms likely increasingly struggled during Q2, as households' real incomes fell further.
June's extra bank holiday also will dampen Q2 GDP; the MPC has to lower its forecast for 0.1% q/q growth.
The fall in May’s composite PMI to a 15-month low is a clear sign that growth is faltering as real incomes drop.
Retail and car sales also have been weak; we expect a quarter-over-quarter drop in GDP in Q2 of about 0.5%.
May’s PMI makes it more likely the MPC will hike by just 25bp this month; markets' expectations are too high.
The labour market currently is very tight, largely due to a sharp decline in the size of the workforce.
We think, however, that around half of that decline will reverse by end-2023, keeping a lid on wage pressures.
This is one reason why we think the MPC will hike Bank Rate by less than markets expect.
Mr. Sunak's measures will boost households' nominal incomes in H2 by 2% and nominal GDP by about 0.7%.
The medium-term impact, however, will be small, and the package is so timely the MPC can't feasibly offset it.
So the outlook for Bank Rate hasn't changed radically; we now expect it to rise to 1.50%, not 1.25%, this year.
The PMI points to GDP flatlining in Q2, but a fall is more likely, given the plunge in government Covid spending.
The MPC shouldn't take comfort from the resilience of the employment index; it lags changes in the PMI.
Many firms still are hiking prices, but the number absorbing cost rises, due to faltering demand, is growing.
CPI inflation likely soared to 9.2% in April, from 7.0% in March, largely due to the jump in the energy price cap.
BRC data are consistent with another large rise in core goods prices, while services prices likely shot up too...
...In response to the hospitality VAT hike, big increases in phone contract prices, and an Easter boost to airfares.
Q1 GDP grew faster in the U.K. than overseas because consumers were shielded from higher energy prices.
Monthly data show growth slowed during Q1; falling retail sales were more than just a consumer rotation.
Falling real incomes, declining health spending and the extra bank holiday will reduce GDP in Q2.
The LFS measure of employment was essentially unchanged in Q1, despite the strength implied by surveys.
But the unemployment rate probably fell to a 47-year low of 3.7%, due to a contraction in the workforce.
Headline wage growth likely edged up, but remained well below CPI inflation; this gap will persist.
Local election results imply the Tories are not on track to win in 2024, unless they turn the economy around.
Currently planned measures to support households in July and October are too small to move the dial.
Bringing forward April 2023's inflation-linked rise in benefits to October would be simple and well-targeted.
The boost to activity from the removal of final Covid restrictions likely was offset by falling health sector output.
Higher energy prices and fresh supply chain frictions, following the war in Ukraine, likely hit manufacturing.
Retail sales and car sales fell, while the recovery in the hospitality sector appears to have topped out.
At least two MPC members now think Bank Rate does not need to rise any further in the near term.
The MPC’s three-year ahead forecast for inflation, based on market rates, is its lowest for over 13 years.
Markets’ rate expectations fell yesterday, but they still look too high in light of the MPC's new projections.
The near-term outlook for households' real disposable income looks bleak; we still expect GDP to drop in Q2.
A recession, however, isn't our base case; people have ample scope to draw on savings and to borrow more.
We now Bank Rate to top out at 1.25% this year, not 1.00%, but still think markets have lost the plot.
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