Oh to be in England now that summer is here

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Stocks continue to creep higher in the US despite Mr Powell’s non-committal comments on the first day of his two-day testimony. Long story short, he continues to dangle the prospect of rate cuts while then suggesting “more confidence” is required before changing rates. The hope remains rather than the expectation that September may see the Federal Reserve’s first cut. The markets are not pricing in July at this time. We do get a raft of inflation data from the US on Thursday, which once again will influence market expectations.

Now that the General Election is over, it will be interesting to see where Andrew Bailey and his gang stand on interest rate policy. Were they waiting for the election’s outcome before deciding how best to act? The next meeting of the Bank rate-setting committee is on August 1st. Ahead of that, I cannot see any planned speeches from Mr Bailey. It is possible, probably largely depending on next week’s UK inflation data, that the Bank of England and the Fed both act in September. We get speeches from a couple of the Bank of England members today, Huw Pill and Catherine Mann; we shall see if they throw any light on the subject.

The pound continues to push higher after the changing of the guard at number 10. The pound hit 1.28 to the dollar and almost 1.18 to the euro. Recent events in France have weakened the euro, as has economic sentiment, apparently. The latest Sentix Survey, an influential survey of opinion among European investors and businesses, also came out Monday morning and showed a sharp dip back into negative territory after eight successive months of improvement.

In contrast to Wall Street, stocks in Europe had a pretty rough day, as the Sentix survey probably did not help matters. Mr Biden remains under pressure as he welcomes NATO leaders to America. It will be interesting to see how markets react should he resign from his desire to lead for another term. At present, Mr Trump is odds on to win if Mr Biden stays in his post; overall, Wall Street seems happy enough at the prospect. Should Kamala Harris take on the reigns, that is unlikely to change Mr Trump’s prospects much. On the other hand, if Michelle Obama takes the reins, that could change. Whether she fancies the job or not, I am afraid I have no insight.  As I understand it, Mr Biden has the whole matter in his hands, and only he can only decide to step aside.

Tonights the big night, the semi finals of the European Championships, will England triumph and if they do, how will they fare against a pretty talented Spanish side. A 16 year old, who has the maturity and abillity way beyond his years. The football could cheer us up, as the rain continues to fall. We also have a test match starting against the West Indies and Wimbledon reaches its climax.