Money Minute Tuesday 22 October: UK public finances and company updates

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This morning in the UK, we get the latest news on the state of the public finances.

Borrowing is expected to have risen in September compared to August, partly due to changes in the way that student loans are treated in the data. With both the government and the opposition promising to keep increasing spending, the public finances have already overshot forecasts and are likely to deteriorate further, regardless of who ends up in power.

For now though, markets couldn’t care less and are happy to continue lending to the UK at extremely low interest rates.

It’s also a busy day for big companies reporting or updating on their third quarters. Consumer goods giant Reckitt Benckiser, packaging group Bunzl, and builders’ merchant Travis Perkins all issue trading updates, while Whitbread – owner of the Premier Inn brand – reports its half-year results.

Over in the US, meanwhile, companies reporting on their third quarter earnings include fast food giant McDonald’s, consumer goods group Procter & Gamble, and motorbike manufacturer Harley Davidson.