Saturday, 18 August, 2018

RBI hikes lending rate, loans likely to become dearer

TENNIS-GBR-WIMBLEDON Mark Carney met Damian Lewis at Wimbledon a few weeks ago
Kelvin Reese | 03 August, 2018, 11:57

The central bank hiked interest rates by 25 basis points to 6.5 per cent, in the second such hike in three months.

LONDON-The Bank of England raised its benchmark interest rate for only the second time in a decade, as worries over inflation trumped concerns about Brexit and a brewing global trade war.

The monetary policy committee raised the repo rate by 25 basis points to 6.50 per cent, in line with predictions by 37 of 63 economists in a Reuters poll last week. That figure is now 90% for new mortgages, and two-thirds of all home loans.

However the MPC says it "continues to recognise that the economic outlook could be influenced significantly by the response of households, businesses and financial markets to developments related to the process of European Union withdrawal".

Throughout his tenure as governor, Carney has faced accusations of being a so-called "unreliable boyfriend", frequently promising rate hikes and then ultimately failing to deliver.

The minutes explained that Brexit is still one of the most important considerations for the bank's rate-setting committee. If rates do go up to 0.75% that will be highest since early 2009.

Laith Khalaf, senior analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said it was a "hugely symbolic day" as although the markets had been expecting the Bank of England to move it meant that rates were higher than 0.5% for the first time since the financial crisis.

Ohio's back-to-school tax holiday starts Friday
She adds taxes can be avoided on layaway items, as long as transactions take place this weekend. Ohio's sales tax holiday will begin Friday August 3rd and will last through Sunday, the 5th.

Dispute over 3D-printed guns raises legal issues
Trump had tweeted earlier that he was looking into the issue, adding, "Already spoke to NRA, doesn't seem to make much sense! ". Gun access advocacy group Defense Distributed was due to put downloadable gun blueprints online on Wednesday.

Paul Manafort made more than $60 million in Ukraine, prosecutors say
Manafort then used that money to fund what the government terms his " lavish lifestyle " including the purchase of luxury cars. Paul Manafort poses for a mugshot photo at the Alexandria Detention Center in Alexandria, Virgina.

The possibility of a no-deal Brexit is "uncomfortably high" and "highly undesirable", Bank of England governor Mark Carney has told the BBC.

"Over the last six to 12 months, borrowing costs for corporates, banks and other institutional borrowers have been rising with yields across the curve on instruments ranging from CPs, CDs, corporate bonds, T-bills and government bonds rising by 125 to 150 bps probably on account of reduced appetite for corporate lending by banks". While raising the key policy rates, the RBI, however, has maintained the neutral policy stance.

Killol Pandya, Head, Fixed Income, Essel Mutual Fund, said, while market is discounting a rate hike, he believes it is a touch-and-go matter with nearly even probability of rate action. "First inflation is stubbornly above the Bank's 2% target, and secondly wage pressure is adding to future inflation expectations".

Cheaper mortgage deals in recent years have also encouraged people to lock in promotional rates.

He said: "We believe that the odds still favour the Bank of England lifting interest rate from 0.50% to 0.75% on Thursday after the August MPC meeting - most likely following a split vote". "Steel consumption also accelerated in May", the central bank said in a media release. Apart from the repo rate, reverse repo rate has also been hiked by 0.25% to 6.25%.

The BoE said it expected Britain's economy would grow by 1.4 percent this year, unchanged from its forecast in May, but it nudged up its forecast for growth in 2019 to 1.8 percent from a previous projection of 1.7 percent.

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