The Swedish Central Bank, the Rijsbank became the first Central Bank to raise rates…… to zero %.. after 5 years at minus. The Swedish Crown (SKR) dutifully rose marginally versus the USD. Norges Bank the Norwegian Central Bank kept its powder dry and kept rates on hold-so no change in the NKR. On the other side of the world the AUD rose approx. 0.3% on the back of a surprise fall in unemployment. The Japanese Yen was sidelined and unchanged. The Brazilian Real benefitted from a more muscular 2.2% growth forecast. The EUR was up versus the USD on two things: the U.S. impeachment proceedings plus ..wait for it: German business morale improving!
Deft footwork from the policymakers with interest rates kept unchanged and talk of too early to say how Brexit uncertainty might go with the new PM’s Brexit moves as yet unclarified. 2 out of 9 members voted for a cut with the other 7 saying let’s wait and see. The statement said that if the current growth rate ( currently a meagre 0.1%) continues, rates may need to be cut, but if growth picks up, rates will need to be raised. Ho hum. Less there for market watchers than in a joke in Scrooge’s cracker.
Have you noticed how cats always make a bee line for people who don’t like…cats?!
Well this week it’s been the turn of a fox in Dagenham (which for overseas readers is a suburb of Greater London on the south bank of the Thames.) The fox, in search of a warm place to rest up, selected a cupboard in the house of a ….vegan! For those of you who don’t know, foxes are omnivores and urban foxes in particular are not known for their vegan diet, preferring small mammals, birds, eggs, carrion and other choice meaty morsels. There are estimated to be 225,000 foxes in the UK of which 33,000 live in cities. For ever Basil Brush fan SGM-FX’s Euan, who currently resides in Lewisham in South East London, is prepared to offer a warm welcome to some foxy friends over Christmas-he might have meant something different- but that’s what he said!
Meanwhile our man with the Christmas cracker has just sent this:
Q: What do you call a man wearing trousers made of wrapping paper? Russell….!
Discussion and Analysis by Humphrey Percy, Chairman and Founder