ECB keeps interest rates on hold, warns of ‘transitory’ higher inflation – business live

US Q3 GDP comes in below forecast, stoking concerns about strength of the US economy


ECB keeps interest rates on hold, says inflation may temporarily remain above target

Paul Johnson, the director of the IFS, said the outlook for living standards jarred with the chancellor’s upbeat tone.

“Over the next several years a combination of tax increases and high inflation will mean very slow growth in living standards,” he said.

“High inflation, rising taxes, and poor growth, still undermined more by Brexit than by the pandemic, will see real living standards barely rising and, for many, falling over the next year.”

The thinktank said the chancellor’s plans came after a tough decade for households after weak levels of economic growth and austerity.

Here’s the rest of Richard Partington’s story about the IFS’s view of the budget:

Oil prices slump to a two-week low on rising US stocks and hopes for Iran talks

Operating profits at Volkswagen, the world’s largest carmaker by output, fell by €500m in the third quarter of 2021. It made €2.8bn (£2.4bn) before one-off items between July and September, down from €3.2bn in the same period last year.

Stellantis, formed from a merger of Fiat and Peugeot in January, reported a 14% decline in revenues as it produced 600,000 fewer vehicles than planned because of the chip shortage.

Car companies around the world have been badly hit by the persistent shortage of computer chips, which are made from semiconductors. As the extent of the coronavirus pandemic became clear in early 2020, carmakers cut back on orders to chip manufacturers, only to find themselves at the back of the queue when demand roared back.

More computer chips than ever are used in cars to control everything from engines to door locks to autonomous driving capabilities.

You can read the rest of Jasper’s article here:

A booming mortgage market and an economic recovery that made it less likely that Covid-hit borrowers would default on loans helped Lloyds Banking Group double its profits in the three months to September.

The group, which owns Halifax and is the UK’s largest mortgage lender, benefited from an increase in demand for larger homes linked to the pandemic “race for space”, and last-ditch efforts by consumers to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday, which finished last month after reducing at the end of June.

There was a £2.7bn net increase in its home loans in the quarter, bringing mortgage lending to £15.3bn over the nine months to September – the strongest rise in that measure at the bank in more than a decade.

It contributed to a 96% rise in pre-tax profits to £2bn in the third quarter compared with £1bn a year earlier. That beat average analyst estimates of £1.3bn.

You can read the rest of Kayleena’s story here:

Royal Dutch Shell has set out a target to halve its emissions by the end of the decade as it revealed worse-than-expected profits for the third quarter despite a global surge in oil and gas markets.

The Anglo-Dutch group, which announced a profit of $4.13bn (£3bn) for the last quarter, is under pressure to continue paying out hefty shareholder dividends from its fossil fuel business while cutting its total greenhouse gas output in line with tougher climate standards among many of its investors.

However, its new climate target falls short of including the bulk of the emissions from the oil and gas it produces and is unlikely to satisfy green campaigners who have called on Shell to urgently reduce its total global heating impact.

The worse-than-expected profit announcement emerged after a major US investor called on the company to break itself up to put an end to its “incoherent” strategy and conflicting stance on climate action.

You can read energy correspondent Jillian Ambrose’s story here:

Sainsbury’s boss reassures customers over Christmas availability



Introduction: Rishi Sunak’s budget ‘will lead to flat recovery’; Shell profits sink



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