LONDON— Bank of England policymakers are signaling that interest rates are likely to go up only gradually— though debate on the matter seems to be getting hotter. Minutes released Wednesday from their July meeting show the members disagree on whether rates should stay low to support the recovery or edge higher as economic growth gathers pace.» Read More
The European Central Bank would be ready to raise interest rates again if necessary, new ECB Governing Council member Athanasios Orphanides said in a German newspaper interview published on Thursday.
After pumping in billions of euros to banks eager for cash in December, the European Central Bank on Wednesday said it would -- as expected by money markets -- remove much of that money.
European stocks had a turbulent second half in 2007 and are still in largely in recovery mode as the year draws to an end.
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown got a boost from an opinion poll on Sunday and said his priority for 2008 would be steering Britain's economy through the fallout from the global credit crunch.
The European Central Bank is determined to stop increases in oil and food prices becoming entrenched in a broader inflation rise, President Jean-Claude Trichet said in a newspaper interview published on Monday.
Britain's current account deficit hit a record high of 20 billion pounds in the third quarter, equivalent to 5.7 percent of GDP, official data showed on Thursday.
All nine members of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee voted to cut interest rates by a quarter-point in December and even discussed whether slowing economic growth meant a bigger move might be needed.
The European Central Bank and Bank of England flooded money markets with funds on Tuesday as the UK central bank chief warned of a possible "self-reinforcing" downward spiral in credit.
The euro zone had a higher-than-expected trade surplus in October despite a continued rise in the euro as exports grew faster than imports, the European Union's statistics office said on Tuesday.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Monday he was ready to become prime minister if his close ally Dmitry Medvedev succeeds him, giving Putin a way to keep a grip on power after he leaves the Kremlin.
Euro zone services grew at a slower pace than expected in December, as the banking sector stalled, signaling a slowdown in the single currency area, a key survey showed on Monday.
Euro zone services growth cooled more than expected in December as the banking sector stalled while manufacturing activity eased marginally, but in line with forecasts, a key survey showed on Monday.
Euro zone inflation surged to 3.1 percent in November, the highest level since May 2001 according to Global Insight and above an earlier estimate of 3 percent, data from the EU statistics agency Eurostat showed on Friday.
Several top central banks including the Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank announced plans to address elevated pressures in short-term funding markets.
The European Central Bank kept rates on hold at 4 percent as expected on Thursday, bucking a global trend of monetary easing amid increased turmoil in the financial markets.
The Bank of England cut its main rate by a quarter of a percentage point to 5.5 percent Thursday amid fears of an economic slowdown because of a spillover from the credit crunch.
With major central banks cutting rates right and left, the European Central Bank risks being the only one fighting the monetary-easing trend. But there seems to be no other option for the ECB.
The Bank of England is still expected to hold interest rates at 5.75 percent on Thursday, but analysts say it is a close call, as expectations shifted towards the possibility of monetary easing following weak economic data.
Verbal intervention to try to stop the euro's advance is all that exporters will get for the moment, but if the going gets tough things may change, analysts say.
Unemployment in the 13 nations that use the euro fell to a new record low of 7.2 percent in October, the EU statistics agency Eurostat said Monday, as Europe's recent growth spurt cut jobseeker queues that are the longest in the industrialized world.
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