The day's main event looms ever larger at 11.00 GMT
There seems to have been a growing consensus lately that the Old Lady needs to hike rates to stave off the inflation concerns, especially with wages lagging behind.
The last BOE inflation report though projected inflation to peak at 2.82% in Q4 2017 versus their previous forecast of 2.75% in Q2 2018. That change of view saw the pound suitably sold down
Well, we've had some stronger than expected inflation data followed by some softer readings so that fits well with the higher but sooner BOE scenario.June CPI yy came in at 2.6% vs 2.9% with the new-ish CPIH reading at 2.6% , the first fall since April 2016.
Falling prices for motor fuels and certain recreational and cultural goods and services were the main contributors to the fall in the rate.These downward contributions were partially offset by rising prices for furniture and furnishings.
GDP forecasts were lowered last time and it would be no great surprise to see another reduction this time too.
Minutes from the last BOE free-coffee morning chat did warn that tighter policy may be needed than yields imply but also saying the consumption remains a bigger problem than first thought due to weaker pound/higher import prices.
Well household debt is on the rise and the final Q2 GDP reading showed disposable income falling for the third consecutive quarter in a row, a trend not seen since the 1970's and UK citizens of a certain age will not need reminding what that decade brought us. Yep, The Osmonds and Bay City Rollers as well a 3-day working week and electricity cut off by mid-evening.
On the BOE's second point GBPUSD is higher since then but so is EURGBP and generally the pound has lagged behind other ccys in the general USD selling of late. We are seeing some correction of that situation this week with both AUD and CAD retreating. But it's the US and EU that we need to look at mostly when it comes to trade/inflation affected by GBP price action.
BOE dep gov and arch-dove Haldane caused a stir when he suggested a hike was in the mix albeit not just yet and in the wake of softer data lately do we really think the BOE will jump in as inflation turns lower or at worst peaks within expectations that are not too far away from current levels?
I have long held the view, posted here on many occasions, that while inflation exceeding wages is a worry, a rate hike right now is even more so given the fragile state of the consumer-led economy. I expect no change in policy stance today and with Forbes gone I can't see where the next hawk on the MPC is coming from to change the vote.
I do concede though that Carney may yet again refer to the need to tighten if necessary. I just hope they consider all prevailing conditions and not just inflation when/if they finally do, and Brexit uncertainty must surely be in that mix too.
As always the algos will lead the way but the devil will be in the detail and, ofc, any wide of the mark forecasts/comments.
I will look to sell GBPUSD rallies and dip-buy EURGBP on anything less than a rate hike.
GBPUSD currently 1.3239 after the post-data spike to 1.3269 with EURGBP back up to 0.8946 from 0.8924 lows.
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Carney presser at 11.30 GMT follows the BOE interest rate decision and inflation report at 11.00 GMT.
Watch the presser live here
Carney poised to shake up markets