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BoE’s Bailey says fear is inflation ‘elevated for longer’ – paper

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BoE's Bailey says fear is inflation 'elevated for longer' - paper
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: People walk past the Bank of England, in London, Britain October 31, 2021. REUTERS/Tom Nicholson

LONDON (Reuters) – Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey said his concern on the inflation outlook is that it could be “elevated for longer” but there is also a chance that inflation does not prove as persistent as feared.

Earlier this month the BoE forecast inflation would reach around 5% in the second quarter of next year, more than double its official target, due to surging energy prices and supply bottlenecks as the world emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“You’re in a fairly febrile world … [the inflation picture] is two-sided,” he said in an interview with the Sunday Times.

“There are risks both ways. Obviously, our concern would be that if it gets into second-round effects, it could be elevated for longer.”

The second-round effects Bailey is particularly concerned about are wage bargaining and the labour market.

“If the economy evolves in the way the forecasts and reports suggest, we’ll have to raise rates. Which, by the way, is entirely consistent with what I said in October,” he said.

The governor said this week he was very uneasy about the inflation outlook and that his vote to keep interest rates on hold on Nov. 4 had been a very close call.

The BoE wrong-footed many investors when it did not lift interest rates from their record low 0.1%, following comments from Bailey in late October which markets interpreted as a signal that a rate rise was very near.

Since then, inflation has risen to a 10-year high of 4.2% and jobless data has not pointed towards higher unemployment after the end of the furlough scheme – a key concern that stayed the BoE’s hand at the start of this month.

Further unemployment data will come before the BoE’s next meeting on Dec. 16.

On Friday, BoE chief economist Huw Pill said the weight of evidence was shifting towards a rise in interest rates next month but that he had not made a decision, and markets would do better to focus on the longer term.

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Economy

South Korean exports dropped 14% in November, the highest in 2.5 years

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exports South Korea

South Korea’s exports fell 14 percent year-on-year to $51.91 billion in November, preliminary data from the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy showed. The November drop was the biggest in 2.5 years since May 2020 and was caused both by the deteriorating global economy, which even a Google price chart showed, and a truckers’ strike in the country.

South Korea exports 2022 – reasons for the drop

Exports fell for the second month in a row. Analysts on average expected an 11% decline, according to Trading Economics. Respondents to MarketWatch predicted a 10.5% decline.

Shipments of semiconductor products overseas, the country’s top export item, fell 29.8%; petrochemicals fell 26.5% and steel exports fell 10.6%. Meanwhile, exports of automobiles jumped 31% and petroleum products 26%.

Exports to China, South Korea’s largest trading partner, fell by 25.5%, and to Asian countries – by 13.9%. Below, supplies to the USA grew by 8% and to the European Union – by 0.1%.

In January-November exports rose by 7.8% on the same period last year and reached a record $629.1 billion.

South Korean imports rose 2.7% to $59.2 billion in November, marking the 23rd consecutive month of gains, but the current rate of growth is the lowest since November 2020. Experts had predicted an increase of only 0.2%.

South Korea’s trade deficit last month was $7.01 billion, compared with a surplus of $2,973 billion a year earlier.

The negative balance was recorded for the eighth month in a row. As a result, by the end of 2022, the country may record a foreign trade deficit for the first time since the financial crisis in 2008.

Earlier we reported that the UN estimates the cost of humanitarian aid in 2023 at a record $51 billion.

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Economy

The UN estimates humanitarian aid costs in 2023 at a record $51 billion because of an impending humanitarian crisis

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a humanitarian crisis

Joint humanitarian operations will require a record $51.5 billion in 2023 to address urgent problems.

The UN Office for the OCHA estimates that 339 million people will need urgent aid in 2023. At the same time, OCHA called on donor countries to provide funds for assistance in 2023 to the 230 million people most in need, living in 68 countries.

Griffiths explained that aid is needed not only for people experiencing conflicts and disease outbreaks. but also for those suffering the effects of climate change, such as people in peninsular Somalia facing drought and those in Pakistan experiencing severe flooding. For the first time, the growing humanitarian crisis has brought the number of displaced people worldwide to the 100 million mark. Also worsening an already bad situation is the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, which affects the poor. Note that the general economic crisis has begun to negatively affect even the Netflix price chart.

Earlier we reported that house prices in the UK fell by 1.4% in November.

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Economy

Average house prices in the UK fell 1.4% in November

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average house prices in the uk

Average house prices in the UK fell 1.4% in the previous month in November to 263,788 thousand pounds (about $319,000), according to the British mortgage company Nationwide Building Society.

The decline was recorded at the end of the second consecutive month and was the most significant in almost 2.5 years – since June 2020. Analysts on average had forecast a decline of only 0.3%, according to Trading Economics.

Are house prices in the UK going to fall even more?

Residential real estate prices in November compared to the same month last year increased by 4.4%. At the same time, experts expected a larger increase of 5.8%. The growth rate slowed down significantly compared with 7.2% in October. Because of the difficult economic situation, British investors are investing in other instruments. The Microsoft price chart, for example, is showing potential for growth, so many are interested in the U.S. stock market. 

“The market looks set to remain under pressure in the coming quarters. Inflation will remain high for some time, and interest rates are likely to continue to rise,” believes Nationwide Senior Economist Robert Gardner. – The outlook is unclear, and much will depend on how the overall economy behaves, but a relatively soft landing is still possible.”

Earlier we reported that Sanctions Circumvention was included in the EU’s list of criminal offenses.

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