INDUSTRY NEWS

Rate cut on the cards

The latest poll of financial experts has revealed they have all predicted a cut in interest rates ahead of this week’s decision.

The Bank of England’s monetary policy committee will make the announcement this Thursday following a difficult period for the world economy and the US decision to again slash its rates.

"A 25 per cent cut in Bank Rate looks a near-certainty next week," said Ross Walker, economist at the Royal Bank of Scotland.

This view was echoed by a further six top financiers including Jonathan Loynes, UK economist at Capital Economics, Kenneth Broux, economist for Lloyds TSB and Simon Hayes, UK economist with Barclays Capital.

There was a slight possibility of a larger cut, Howard Archer, UK chief economist at Global Insight, explained.

"We suspect that only a further very sharp fall in equity prices next week and last minute data indicating that the UK growth outlook has started to deteriorate sharply could possibly prompt a 50 basis point cut," he said.

The US Federal Reserve cut its rate again on Thursday, following a previous drop of three-quarters of a point last week.

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