Displaying items by tag: Brexit
UK goods exports to the European Union fell 40.7% in January, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), while imports tumbled.
The figures are the first since the introduction of new trading rules between the UK and the EU.
The ONS said the sharp fall in trade was "likely the result of temporary factors".
Meanwhile, new data showed the UK economy shrank by 2.9% in January as the third lockdown came into force.
The economy is 9% smaller than it was before the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
The ONS said January's fall was a "notable hit", albeit smaller than some had expected.
Retailers, restaurants and hairdressers were all affected by the latest Covid-19 lockdown.
Amsterdam ousted London as the largest financial trading centre in Europe last month as Brexit-related changes to finance rules came into force.
About €9.2bn (£8.1bn) worth of shares were traded on Amsterdam exchanges each day, against €8.6bn in London.
Following new Brexit rules, EU-based banks wanting to buy European shares currently cannot trade via London, meaning a loss of fees for City firms.
Bank of England chief Andrew Bailey has warned the EU not to cut off London.
On Wednesday, Mr Bailey said there were signs that the EU planned to cut the UK off from its financial markets.
Following the new Brexit trading rules coming into effect, there are talks to harmonise rules over financial regulations - so-called equivalence
Both sides are working towards a March deadline to agree an "equivalence" regime under which the UK and Europe would recognise the other's regulations.
Number 10, said it remained "open" to discussions with the EU on the equivalence issue.
"Despite the fact that we've supplied all of the necessary paperwork and are one of the world's most preeminent financial centres, with a strong regulatory system, the EU still haven't granted us full equivalence."
"This has meant that some meant a number of EU shares that were previously traded on UK venues, have moved to the EU venues on advice of the European regulator, but our position is fragmentation of share trading across financial centres is in no one's interest," it added.
It's called invisible trade - but selling services abroad is something the UK excels in, particularly when it comes to banking.
Financial services makes up about 7% of the UK's income in total, and about 40% of banking and investment's business abroad is with the EU.
But its needs were largely invisible from the deal struck with the EU at the end of last year. The diversion of share trading is the first visible, if inevitable, sign of the impact.
And that business may not return to London. Even if the UK government and Brussels can ultimately reach agreement that financial services can get more access to each others markets, on the basis the UK's standards can be deemed "equivalent" to the EU's, share dealing may not be part of that.
The UK government hopes Brexit will enhance the City's dominance, with scope to deepen relationships with other financial centres. But that's a work in progress.
The boss of one share exchange described a recently-struck deal that allows Swiss shares to be traded in London as being like a free kick in a football match rather than an equaliser: it doesn't compensate for what has been lost in loosening ties with Europe.
The UK’s cash system will collapse without urgent legislation to protect it, according to a new study.
Panel members behind the Access to Cash Review, which published its final report a year ago, said action is needed to protect cash for as long as people need it.
They say that in the 12 months since their last review, significant issues within the country’s cash infrastructure remain.
The review was set up by ATM network provider Link to help understand how consumers use cash and how their requirements to access physical money will change over the next five to 15 years.
UK inflation in January rose to a six-month high as petrol and house prices rose, official figures show.
The Consumer Prices Index (CPI) stood at 1.8% last month, up from 1.3% in December, the Office for National Statistics said.
"The rise in inflation is largely the result of higher prices at the pump and airfares falling by less than a year ago," the ONS said.
The rise is ahead of economists' CPI forecast of 1.6% in January.
CPI remains below the Bank of England's 2% target for inflation. Wednesday's inflation data pushed the value of the pound above $1.30. Versus the euro, the pound had started the day down 0.25% but rose back to trade flat against the single currency.
However, some analysts said that the new figures were unlikely to "move the dial" on the central bank's next decision on interest rates in March.
There are a few special days in my career that stand out because of the historical events I was privileged to live through and comment on – memorialize, perhaps – to my colleagues. The two that stand out most: I remember the morning meeting I gave on 10 November 1989, the day after the Berlin Wall fell. Luckily in those pre-internet days I had a copy of Trotsky’s The Russian Revolution and so could get the quote right: You are bankrupt, your role in history is played out. Go out where you belong – onto the dustheap of history. I remember the day Barack Obama was elected; choking back emotion, I quoted to my colleagues the words of Martin Luther King: "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” I thought Obama’s election signaled that that day had arrived in the US. How wrong I was.
But what am I to say to my colleagues today, Brexit Day? A day nearly as heavy with historical import, but for me, totally bereft of the hope and vision of a new, better future that these other landmark dates were imbued with. On the contrary, this seems to me to be a country rejecting the future and turning to a mythical past, and in the process committing economic and political suicide: the impoverishment of the people leading, most likely, to the dissolution of the centuries-old alliance among the several nations of the United Kingdom. This time the map is being redrawn out of fear, not out of hope.