Guardian Stockbrokers Key Economic News Friday 5 February 2021

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The key points from today’s economic news, brought to you by Guardian Stockbrokers.

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UK construction PMI dropped in January

In the UK, the construction PMI registered a drop to a reading of 49.20 in January, compared to a level of 54.60 in the previous month. Markets were expecting the construction PMI to record a drop to a reading of 52.90.

BoE holds its key interest rate

The Bank of England (BoE), in its latest monetary policy meeting kept its benchmark interest rate steady at 0.10% and left the size of its total asset purchase programme at £895 billion. However, the central bank cautioned that it would introduce negative interest rates if the recovery falters. Further, the BoE forecasted that Britain’s economy would contract by 4% in the first three months of 2021 and also lowered its growth forecast to 5% for the whole year, compared to a rate of 7.25% previously anticipated.

Euro-zone retail sales rose more than expected in December

In the Eurozone, retail sales rose 2.00% on a MoM basis in December, compared to a revised fall of 5.70% in previous month. Market anticipations were for the seasonally adjusted retail sales to climb 1.60%.

US factory orders advanced more than anticipated in December

In the US, factory orders rose 1.10% on a MoM basis in December, compared to a revised advance of 1.30% in the prior month. Market expectations were for factory orders to climb 0.70%.

US number of initial jobless claims unexpectedly fell in the week ended 30 January 2021

In the US, the seasonally adjusted number of initial jobless claims recorded an unexpected drop to a level of 779.00 K in the week ended 29 January 2021, compared a revised reading of 812.00 K in the prior week. Markets were expecting the initial jobless claims to record a rise to a level of 830.00 K.

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