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BoE’s Bailey sees economic risks skewed ‘very heavily’ to downside By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey poses for a photograph on the first day of his new role at the Central Bank in London

By David Milliken

LONDON (Reuters) – Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey said there is a significant risk of further disappointments to UK economic growth, and that the country faced unprecedented uncertainty as coronavirus cases began to climb again.

Britain’s economy shrank by 20% in the three months to June, the biggest drop of any large advanced economy, and Bailey reiterated that he expected output at the end of the third quarter was 10% below its level at the end of 2019.

“Ten percent is still a huge gap, let’s be clear on that,” Bailey told an online seminar for central bank governors hosted by the Group of Thirty, a panel of economic policymakers and senior bankers on Sunday.

“We’re operating at an unprecedented level of economic uncertainty. Of course, that is heightened now by the return of COVID…. The risks remain very heavily skewed towards the downside,” he added.

The number of new COVID-19 cases in Britain has surged in recent weeks, forcing the government to shorten bar and restaurant opening hours and limit the extent to which people can meet outside of work or school.

Sticking closely to previous messages on the outlook for policy, Bailey said the best approach was to act aggressively, rather than cautiously, in the face of uncertainty.

Many economists expect the BoE to announce further bond purchases on Nov. 5 following its next policy meeting, on top of the 310 billion pounds ($400 billion) of asset purchases already underway since the start of the pandemic.

Choosing the right policy tools would be important in future as the effectiveness of both quantitative easing and negative interest rates depended on the state of the economy and the structure of the financial system, Bailey added.

“Our assessment of negative interest rates, from the experience elsewhere, is that they probably appear to work better in a more wholesale financial market context, and probably better in a nascent economic upturn,” he said.

Last week the BoE asked banks how feasible it would be to implement below-zero interest rates, and in August set out a range of considerations before it would go down the path taken by the European Central Bank and Bank of Japan.

Bailey also reiterated that the BoE did not target sterling’s exchange rate, but did take its level into account, and that exchange rate moves had contributed to the BoE’s ability to meet its 2% inflation target.

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Economy

Comptroller slams Israeli government’s Covid-19 failings

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Israel’s State Comptroller Matanyahu Englman has issued a series of special reports listing the government’s main failings in handling the Covid-19 pandemic and its resulting economic crisis.

On testing the report cites the NIS 98 million spent by the Ministry of Health on serological tests but it has yet to develop a comprehensive plan on how to use them.

On tracking while the Comptroller has some positive words to say about the Shin Bet icon and its efforts to break the chain of infection, he lists low figures for those observing isolation and high figures for falsely identifying people who had come into contact with an infected person. While praising the Shin Bet’s efforts to protect privacy, the Comptroller still suggests it would be better for a civilian organization to undertake the tracking.

The Comptroller also blasts the Ministry of Health for still not having an epidemiological investigation system as well as failing, together with the Health Funds, to set up properly for distributing a Covid-19 vaccination when it becomes available next year. Another criticism is of the failure to supply adequate personal protective equipment to medical teams.

The Comptroller slams the Ministry of Education, which eight months into the crisis, and with schools still closed and lessons given remotely, still has no idea how many students do not have an available computer at home and/or an Internet infrastructure. The Ministry of Education, based on OECD figures claims that only 6% of schoolchildren need computers but the Central Bureau of Statistics puts the figure at 16% and the Ministry of Finance Chief Economist says it is 20%. To meet the shortfall the Ministry of Education has procured 150,000 computers but it remains unclear who they are going to give them to.

The Comptroller also takes the Israel Tax Authority to task for failing to send out sufficient payment to the self-employed hit by the economic crisis because of problems in calculating the correct compensation.

Published by Globes, Israel business news – en.globes.co.il – on October 26, 2020

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2020




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Israeli visual assistance co TechSee raises $30m

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Israeli intelligent visual assistance company TechSee today announced it has closed a $30 million Series C financing round co-led by OurCrowd, Salesforce Ventures, and TELUS Ventures with participation from Scale Venture Partners and Planven Entrepreneur Ventures.

The company has grown rapidly by reducing customer friction points for enterprises through its visual assistance technology, which bridges the visual gap in customer service, allowing customers and technicians to receive real-time AR guidance on their smartphone or tablet screens in assisted service or self-service mode. The company has also developed computer vision AI with technology that can provide visual guidance to users installing, operating, or troubleshooting networking devices, smart home products, home appliances, and more. TechSee’s AI platform can automatically identify components, ports, cables, LED indicators, and more to detect issues and suggest resolutions for consumers, contact center agents, and field technicians.




The Herzliya-based company was founded in 2015 by CEO Eithan Cohen, Prof. Gabby Sarussi and Amir Yoffe. TechSee also has offices in New York, Florida and Madrid. The company raised $16 million in a Series B financing round in December 2018.

Cohen said, “There has been a significant increase in demand for contactless customer service technologies propelled by Covid-19 social distancing requirements and the acceleration of digital transformation projects. Our Visual Automation technology is at the heart of it, and now that momentum is growing exponentially as businesses seek to reduce costs and optimize customer experience strategies in the current environment. Our vision is to get rid of the user manual and replace it with dynamic AR assistants.”

TechSee has established commercial partnerships with Verizon, Vodafone, Orange, Liberty Global, Accenture, Hitachi, and Lavazza, among others.

Published by Globes, Israel business news – en.globes.co.il – on October 26, 2020

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2020




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China’s NEV sales to account for 50% of all new sales by 2035, industry body says By Reuters

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© Reuters. The Wider Image: Trade tensions with U.S. testing Chinese consumers

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Sales of new energy vehicles (NEV) will make up 50% of overall new car sales in China, the world’s biggest auto market, by 2035, an industry official said on Tuesday.

The influential industry body, China Society of Automotive Engineers (China-SAE), has members of senior auto executives and academicians and is involved in the setting of the country’s mid- to long-term energy vehicle policies.

NEVs include battery electric, plug-in hybrid and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles. Industry expects China to sell around 1.1 million NEVs this year.

Li Jun, president of China-SAE, told the association’s annual conference in Shanghai on Tuesday that the association predicts 95% of NEV sales in 2035 will be battery electric vehicles.

Li added hybrid vehicles will make up the rest 50% of all new vehicle sales by 2035.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.





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