BUSINESS LIVE: BoE expected to maintain key interest rate; Shell plans $3.5 billion buyback; Haleon is suffering from weaker US demand


The Bank of England’s monetary policy committee will announce the next steps for British interest rates at midday, with rate setters expected to opt for another pause at 5.25 percent.

The FTSE 100 opens at 8am. Companies with reports and trading updates today include Shell, BT, Sainsbury’s, Haleon, Entain and British American Tobacco. Read the Business Live blog from Thursday November 2nd below.

> If you’re using our app or a third-party website, click here to read Business Live

Haleon is suffering from weaker US demand

Haleon missed market estimates for third-quarter revenue after the world’s largest consumer health care company was hurt by lower sales volumes in North America due to weaker demand for its digestive health products and vitamins.

Consumer healthcare companies and their essential everyday products are typically the last to be affected by an economic slowdown in demand, but high interest rates and rental costs are making consumers more frugal by the day.

Haleon reported a 5 percent organic sales increase to £2.79 billion for the three months to the end of September, slightly below forecasts of £2.83 billion.

Volumes fell 1.6 percent in the quarter.

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Shell plans $3.5 billion buyback

Shell has planned $3.5 billion in new share buybacks over the next three months, up from $2.7 billion in the previous three months, after the company posted a third-quarter profit of $6.2 billion. dollars had been recorded.

The oil giant’s earnings were in line with market expectations due to higher refining margins and strong liquefied natural gas trading.

Shell said: “Returns attributable to Shell shareholders compared to the second quarter of 2023 were primarily due to higher refining margins, higher realized oil prices, higher LNG trading and optimization results and higher upstream production, partially offset by lower integrated gas volumes.”

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BoE is expected to maintain key interest rates

Shaan Raithatha, senior economist at Vanguard, Europe:

“We expect the MPC to leave the key interest rate unchanged at 5.25 percent.” This is supported by recent rhetoric from key members of the committee suggesting that it would be better to leave interest rates at current levels for longer, than to raise interest rates even further from here.

“For example, you see [BoE chief economist Huw] Comments from Pill on October 16th: “I’m reasonably confident that interest rates at their current levels are moderating inflation and suppressing that persistent component of inflation.”.’

Drew Weisholtz

Drew Weisholtz is a Worldtimetodays U.S. News Reporter based in Canada. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Drew Weisholtz joined Worldtimetodays in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

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