Features

Money Minute Thursday 19 September: UK retail sales and interest rates

Today we get the official retail sales data for August, plus the Bank of England's latest monetary policy decision and America's weekly jobless claims figures.

This morning in the UK, we get the official retail sales data for August.

Recent surveys from industry bodies such as the CBI and British Retail Consortium have been somewhat gloomy.However, official data has so far suggested that retail sales are holding up just fine, and that the surveys are perhaps being skewed by the respondents' fears over Brexit.As long as the labour market remains buoyant, and wages continue to rise, consumption is unlikely to weaken significantly.

Then, at mid-day, the Bank of England releases its latest monetary policy decision.The bank rate is currently sitting at 0.75% and that is not expected to change.The reality is that until Brexit is resolved one way or another, the Bank is likely to remain on hold, almost regardless of what happens with the economic data.

Meanwhile, in the US, in the afternoon, we have the usual weekly jobless claims figures. So far there are no real signs of US labour market weakness, despite market fears of recession.

Recommended

Too embarrassed to ask: what is fiscal drag?
Too embarrassed to ask

Too embarrassed to ask: what is fiscal drag?

How can politicians raise more tax revenue, without damaging their political popularity too badly? One way is by using “fiscal drag”. Here's what that…
2 Mar 2021
What is “yield curve control” and why is it coming to a central bank near you?
Government bonds

What is “yield curve control” and why is it coming to a central bank near you?

Central banks around the world are determined not to let interest rates go up too quickly or by too much – a practice known as “yield curve control”. …
1 Mar 2021
Are we heading for another bond market tantrum?
Government bonds

Are we heading for another bond market tantrum?

The last time the US central bank tried tightening the purse strings, the bond markets threw a tantrum. With yields now rising, could we be about to s…
25 Feb 2021
Four ways to boost Britain’s stricken economy
UK Economy

Four ways to boost Britain’s stricken economy

When lockdowns end, we will need a plan to get our businesses up and running again. Matthew Lynn outlines four urgently needed measures that the gover…
21 Feb 2021

Most Popular

A beginner’s guide to bitcoin: the technical genius behind bitcoin and the blockchain – and how it all works
Bitcoin

A beginner’s guide to bitcoin: the technical genius behind bitcoin and the blockchain – and how it all works

In the second in his series on bitcoin, Dominic Frisby looks at the blockchain – bitcoin’s unique underlying architecture – and what makes it and the …
2 Mar 2021
A beginner’s guide to bitcoin: how to buy bitcoin
Bitcoin

A beginner’s guide to bitcoin: how to buy bitcoin

For the novice, buying bitcoin can be a daunting prospect. Here, Dominic Frisby outlines the process from start to finish.
3 Mar 2021
Why gold has been such a bad investment so far this year
Gold

Why gold has been such a bad investment so far this year

Gold – the ultimate safe haven investment – is proving anything but safe. It’s lost over $200 an ounce since its high at the start of the year. Domini…
3 Mar 2021