Ian Campbell taught English at the Université de Poitiers before studying economics. He was Chief Economist, Emerging Markets at ABN AMRO Bank, Head of Latin American Research at BancBoston Securities and Regional Director, Latin America at the Economist Intelligence Unit. Since becoming a journalist in 2000 he has written for The Washington Post, The Times, The Independent, The Economist, The Globe and Mail, The Chicago Tribune, The New Statesman and other publications. From 2000 to 2003 he was Economics Correspondent for the UPI press agency. He has recently returned to the UK, where he is writing a book on rural Mexico.
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Brent fell below the $100 a barrel threshold on Monday. The decline is mostly an adjustment to less money-printing, a firmer dollar and shale supply, not a sign of impending deflationary doom. Oil could fall further. That will be good for consumer spending and global recovery.
International tension has helped stabilise the gold price after a 2013 plunge. But the fundamentals are bad. ETF redemptions persist while bar and coin investment has dropped heavily. Jewellery demand remains soft. Consumers want cheaper gold. They are likely to get it next year.
This year or early next for a UK rate rise? That has been the market’s question. The data demands much more caution. The Bank of England expects inflation to be on target until 2017, and its growth forecasts look optimistic as Europe struggles. Expect flat rates for a long time.
- Flight to safety is liable to persist
- Interest rates may stay low in Freelance Britain
- UK’s strong GDP has a soft centre
- Markets sleepwalking into European slowdown
- Deflation is good in UK but risky in euro zone
- U.S. inflation poses threat to 2007-style market calm
- UK's hawkish shift is dangerous