Greg Bell

Base rates remain the same! So what does this mean for the SME sector?

Base rates remain unchanged at 0.5% for the 27th month in a row and nobody is surprised one iota.

A plethora of renowned economists were today absolving themselves of failed past forecasts of rate increases to be replaced with fresh future forecasts. Rates will start to rise again at some point in the not too distant future - a fair summation of the rhetoric….genius!

Handbags & Gladrags

Profits at Burberry have increased by 40% to £300 million in the past 12 months with turnover up 27% in the year to £1.5 billion.

Shares in the company have doubled and in an environment of global downturn it is interesting to learn that one of the current clutch of UK success stories sells product that have capitalised on the US and Asian markets seemingly insatiable appetite for European luxury goods.

Inflation Balloons

A regular feature on the SBF Blog gives an outlook for interest rates, the current market conditions and who said what in the week that was. Why Balloons....why not, hot air, boom bust, simply insert your own punch lines.

Andrew Sentence poured cold water on the MPC’s belief that inflation will peak at 5% before dropping back to the governments target of 2% within two year and the big question is again just for how long can the MPC justify holding bank base rates at 0.5% without the allegation of playing politics with the real value of the pound in your pocket.

UK’s economic recovery is starting to stutter

Latest financial data now shows that the UK’s economic recovery is starting to stutter. May’s CIPS manufacturing survey suggests that industrial sector has started to contract again. The fall in the overall PMI from 54.4 to 52.1 was primarily driven by a slump in the output balance from 56.3 to 49.9. On past form, that leaves the balance consistent with quarterly falls in manufacturing output of around 1%.

Panda Power!

A number UK companies have seen their Google rankings drop substantially after the search engine rolled out its latest "Panda" update, intended to demote sites which scrape content from others, to the UK and other English-language Google users.