Financial markets’ focus on Thursday would shift towards the Monetary Policy Committee’s announcement.
Consensus was for a 25 basis point interest rate hike in Bank Rate to 4.25%.
Feeding those expectations likely were data published the day before showing that the cost of living in the Uk reaccelerated unexpectedly in February to an annual rate of increase of 10.4%.
So too, recent calmer waters in global banking had led markets to expect that the Federal Reserve would hike rates by an identical amount the night before.
Nonetheless, not everyone was onboard with the consensus, including Samuel Tombs, chief UK economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics.
Tombs conceded that the decision would be “finely balanced” between raising rates and staying put.
However, he believed that financial stability concerns and recent slowdown in wage growth would ensure that a small majority on the MPC voted for no change.
He also believed that the underlying inflation trends were such that “the MPC still should be able to confidently predict that CPI inflation will fall sharply over the rest of this year-perhaps even back to the 2% target-steering them away from a significant further increase in Bank Rate.”
Thursday 23 March
INTERIM EX-DIVIDEND DATE
Close Brothers Group, Craneware, Finsbury Food Group, Fonix Mobile , Hargreaves Services, Thorpe (F.W.), Volution Group
QUARTERLY EX-DIVIDEND DATE
British American Tobacco, Vaalco Energy, Inc (DI), Wheaton Precious Metals Corp.NPV (CDI)
INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
Continuing Claims (US) (12:30)
Current Account (US) (12:30)
Initial Jobless Claims (US) (12:30)
New Homes Sales (US) (14:00)
Gulf Keystone Petroleum Ltd Com Shs (DI), Playtech, Pollen Street, Portmeirion Group, Safestyle UK , Sopheon
Bankers Inv Trust, Bankmuscat (S.A.O.G) GDR (Reg S), Blackrock Throgmorton Trust, Crest Nicholson Holdings, Driver Group, Hardide, Hyundai Motor Company GDR (Reg S), IDOX, LPA Group, Zaim Credit Systems
UK ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
BoE Interest Rate Decision (12:00)
FINAL DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE
Jersey Electricity ‘A’ Shares
FINAL EX-DIVIDEND DATE
Chemring Group, CLS Holdings, Conduit Holdings Limited Com Shs (DI), Glanbia (CDI), HGCapital Trust, Hikma Pharmaceuticals, Maven Income & Growth 3 VCT, MTI Wireless Edge Ltd., Nichols, OSB Group , Pearson, Schroders, XP Power Ltd. (DI)