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UK Comment — Public sector borrowing higher than expected in March

    Public sector net borrowing higher than expected in March, but in line with OBR estimate for financial yearPublic sector net borrowing (PSNB) excluding banking groups was GBP 5.1bn in March; the consensus expectation was GBP 3.1bn. PSNB excluding banking groups in March this year was the highest since March 2015 and GBP 0.8bn higher than in March 2016. However, borrowing for earlier months was revised down and initial estimates indicate that PSNB in the financial year ending March 2017 (April 2016 to March 2017) was GBP 52bn, or 2.

    Kari Due-Andresen, Chief Economist Norway |

UK Comment — The UK Prime Minister surprisingly calls for a snap election on June 8

  1. Early election called to "strengthen Britain’s hand in the Brexit negotiations"
  2. Polls suggest Conservatives would win by a landslide, but majority could narrow ahead
  3. A "hard Brexit" could become more likely...or not - we keep our forecasts unchanged

Kari Due-Andresen, Chief Economist Norway |

UK Comment — Industry and construction output disappoint in February - momentum is weakening

  1. Industrial output down further in February - some of the weakness due to temporary factors
  2. Construction down on drop in all new work
  3. Economic sentiment points to decelerating growth

Kari Due-Andresen, Chief Economist Norway |

Global macro forecast — US toward recession

• Europe pressured by structural problems
• The economic and political toolbox is empty
• Low growth in the Nordics

Ann Öberg, Chief Economist |

UK Comment — Construction sentiment weakens a little further in March

  1. Slowdown led by weaker rise in housing activity
  2. Slower growth in new orders and employment
  3. Sentiment points to weakening output growth ahead

Kari Due-Andresen, Chief Economist Norway |

UK Comment — Manufacturing PMI weaker than expected in March

  1. Manufacturing sentiment pulled lower by production and new orders
  2. Slowdown most notable among consumer goods producers
  3. PMI suggests weakening momentum, but CBI and EC survey paint a somewhat stronger picture

Kari Due-Andresen, Chief Economist Norway |