News Round-Up

Nov 3: Borrowing rates held; Brits flee Gaza; Storm Ciaran strikes; New E-Class Estate

  • Here are the headlines on Friday, November 3

Time 11:17 pm, November 2, 2023

‘Much too early’ to cut borrowing costs, Bank says after holding rates at 5.25%

UK interest rates have been held at 5.25 per cent as the Bank of England said it is ‘much too early’ to think about cutting borrowing costs, despite giving a bleak outlook for the economy.

The Bank’s governor, Andrew Bailey, insisted that households and businesses will feel more pain if price rises do not ease.

The Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted by a six-three majority to keep the base rate at 5.25 per cent. Three members preferred to increase rates to 5.5 per cent.

More Britons manage to flee Gaza through the Rafah crossing

British nationals have been able to get out of Gaza through the Rafah crossing for a second day, officials said amid intensive diplomatic efforts as Israeli forces continue to advance.

The Foreign Office said more UK nationals were able to make it into Egypt on Thursday after two UK aid workers managed to flee Gaza a day earlier, but declined to say how many.

Around 200 Britons in Gaza have registered with the authorities, and along with their dependents the total number the UK is trying to secure passage for is thought to be in the low hundreds.

School closures, power cuts and travel chaos as 100mph Storm Ciaran strikes

Some children may not be able to get back into their classrooms until Monday after Storm Ciaran battered the south of England and the Channel Islands with gusts of up to 100mph and heavy rain.

Damage to properties in Jersey meant some residents had to evacuate their homes and seek refuge in a hotel, with one woman saying hailstones ‘bigger than a golf ball’ had broken her windows.

The storm caused travel chaos and the AA, which had a large number of callouts in southern England, said it had ‘rescued 84 customers stuck in flood so far today, with thousands more impacted by the weather’.

Musk warns of humanoid robots that can ‘chase you anywhere’ in talk with Sunak

Elon Musk warned of humanoid robots that ‘can chase you anywhere’ in a conversation with Rishi Sunak to close out the Government’s artificial intelligence (AI) safety summit.

The tech billionaire, speaking to the Prime Minister after the two-day event at Bletchley Park which was attended by politicians and experts from around the world, also said the technology could bring a future where paid work is redundant.

A jacketless Mr Sunak threw softball questions to the X owner, whom he described as a ‘brilliant innovator and technologist’, during a 50-minute-long interview in front of an audience of business chiefs at London’s gilded Lancaster House.

Thursday’s Car Dealer headlines you might have missed

Mercedes announces pricing for new E-Class Estate

The new Mercedes E-Class Estate has gone on sale, with a range of different versions and engines available to suit buyers.

The Estate model goes on sale a few months after the standard saloon version, with prices starting from £57,930.

The new E-Class Estate comes with more modern styling than its predecessor, with design details inspired by Mercedes’ electric models.

Shell meets expectations as profit slumps by a third

Oil giant Shell managed to avoid the fate that befell rival BP earlier in the week as its earnings for the third quarter stayed largely in line with expectations.

The London-listed oil and gas producer said its adjusted earnings fell 34 per cent in the three months compared with a year earlier, landing at a little over $6.2bn (£5.1bn).

The result was only 24 million dollars (£19.7 million) behind expectations, unlike BP which missed its forecast underlying replacement cost profit by around $700m dollars (£575m), causing shares to plummet on Tuesday.

Global stocks rally on hopes US and UK interest rates have peaked

A sea of green has washed over global markets after central banks in the US and the UK opted to keep interest rates steady, sparking hopes that the battle against inflation is picking up pace.

London’s FTSE 100 gained more than 100 points on Thursday, with banking stocks among the biggest risers. The top index moved 104.1 points higher, or 1.42 per cent, to close at 7,446.53.

Elsewhere in Europe, France’s Cac 40 surged 1.85 per cent and Germany’s Dax gained 1.48 per cent.

Apple suffers full year of declining revenues for first time since 2019

Apple’s sales remained on a downward slope during the summer, resulting in a full year of declining revenue at the technology trendsetter.

The slight sales deterioration announced on Thursday for the July-September period marked the end of Apple’s fiscal year – a stretch that saw the company suffer a revenue decrease from the prior year in each quarter.

Although this past fiscal year’s revenue only dipped by three per cent from the previous fiscal year, it was still a noteworthy anomaly in a business that has been so successful that Apple became the first US company to be valued at 3.0 trillion US dollars (£2.46 trillion) earlier this year.

Jack Williams's avatar

Jack joined the Car Dealer team in 2021 as a staff writer. He previously worked as a national newspaper journalist for BNPS Press Agency. He has provided news and motoring stories for a number of national publications including The Sun, The Times and The Daily Mirror.

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