October 7, 2011

Financial crisis could be worst ever

by Jan Harris

The financial crisis of the 1930s was dubbed the Great Depression, but the current crisis could be even greater, according to Bank of England governor Sir Mervyn King. Growing fears of a double-dip recession have led the Bank to announce another injection of £75bn into the economy through a further round of quantitative easing (QE). […]




October 5, 2011

UK economic growth at 0.1% in Q2

by Kay Mitchell

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has today announced the UK economy grew by 0.1% in the second quarter – slightly less than a previous estimate of 0.2%. Today’s reading is the third and final one for the April to June period and third quarter figures will be available later this month. In the meantime, […]




September 29, 2011

Energy bill hikes will speed up inflation rate

by Kay Mitchell

According to Spencer Dale, the Bank of England’s chief economist, UK inflation is set to accelerate due to soaring energy bills. The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed UK Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) rose to annual rate of 4.5% in August from July’s rate of 4.4% – more than double the […]




September 27, 2011

BCC urges fresh round of QE

by Kay Mitchell

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) is calling for a fresh round of quantitative easing (QE) – a scheme designed to stimulate growth within the economy. The leading business group has written to Chancellor George Osborne to ask him to consider the option when he delivers his autumn statement later this year. At the Bank […]




September 21, 2011

Bank minutes suggest further round of QE

by Kay Mitchell

Minutes of the Bank of England’s September 7-8 meeting have been released today and have revealed all nine members of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted to keep interest rates at the historic low of 0.5%. This was the second consecutive month that the Committee voted unanimously to keep rates at the record low after […]




September 16, 2011

Vince Cable supports fresh round of QE

by Kay Mitchell

Business Secretary Vince Cable has today said the Bank of England should consider a fresh round of quantitative easing (QE) to stimulate the economy. A recent slew of weak data has also led some analysts to believe that the central bank will consider further QE – also known as printing money. In a pamphlet published […]




September 15, 2011

Bank of England policymaker calls for state-owned SME bank

by Jan Harris

Adam Posen a rate setter on the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) wants the Government to establish a state-run bank focused on helping small UK businesses. The bank would resemble the USA’s Small Business Administration (SBA) and would help small businesses secure credit. America’s SBA was established in 1953 and offers loans and […]




September 13, 2011

UK inflation edges higher in August

by Kay Mitchell

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) today announced Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) rose to annual rate of 4.5% last month from July’s rate of 4.4%. However, the figure was in line with analysts’ expectations. Higher inflation continues to be led by rising food costs but the main reason behind last month’s rise was a 5.1% […]




September 12, 2011

UK business confidence sinks to two-year low

by Kay Mitchell

A survey among UK companies has found that confidence has fallen to a level not seen since June 2009. BDO’s output index, which measures businesses’ predictions about their turnover, slumped to 93.6 last month from 95.0 in July – the lowest in 26 months. Peter Hemington, a partner at the accountancy firm, said it is […]




June 29, 2011

Bank of England criticises MPs over bank lending to SMEs

by Jan Harris

The Bank of England has warned MPs that SMEs are still being unfairly treated by banks. According to the Bank of England’s latest figures, lending to UK companies fell again last month, while new mortgage lending and consumer credit showed a slight improvement. Lending to private non-financial companies fell by £4.9bn in May, with lending […]