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Car dealerships are being forced to take on many more vehicles from manufacturers seeking to ramp up their share of the market and offload risk, according to a study. The value of dealership’s inventories has risen from £16 billion five years ago, to £23 billion last year.
Will cutting interest rates increase inequality?
The Bank of England might decide to cut interest rates this week. If it does, the aim will be to stimulate stronger growth and higher, yes higher inflation. But such a move would have other consequences too. What, for example, would it mean for inequality?
There is no guarantee that there will be a rate cut. In fact, some members of the Bank’s rate setting body, the Monetary Policy Committee, have been cautious about an early move. The main alternatives open to the bank are a cut in its official policy interest rate from the current all-time low of 0.5%, or a resumption of its quantitative easing (QE) programme which involves buying financial assets with newly created money. Both tend to reduce interest rates across the economy. These policies also have the potential to alter the distribution of income and wealth.
Carmaker giant Ford has reported weaker-than-expected second quarter profits, in the face of stagnant US sales and a tougher market in China.
It also said that while it expects strong results for 2016, there are “risks” to reaching its targets due to US economic uncertainty. Quarterly net income fell 9% to $1.97bn (£1.5bn) from $2.16bn a year earlier. Ford shares fell by 9.5% in afternoon trading in New York on the news. Rival General Motors’ shares fell by 3.65%. The company said that sales in the US and China were lower than anticipated in the quarter, and Ford also announced its first quarterly loss in Asia Pacific for three years.
UK manufacturing data worse than expected, after mixed results from Europe and China
Sterling has fallen back after the disappointing UK manufacturing data, on the basis that an interest rate cut this week is all but nailed on. Against the dollar the pound has dropped 0.11% to $1.3212 and is down marginally against the euro at €1.183. Meanwhile the FTSE 100 has lost most of its early gains and is now up just 7 points or 0.1%.