BANK STRESS TESTS
Good news for Britain’s four big banks yesterday as they passed stress tests – effectively a health check - set by European regulators.
Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds and RBS were all given a clean bill of health - although 25 others across Europe failed.
Nine of these were in Italy, where the ECB identified a €25 billion black hole.
The finer details haven't been revealed but the tests essentially check whether banks could withstand “adverse” conditions.
Of the UK banks, Lloyds and RBS fared worse than Barclays and HSBC but this reflects the difficulties they had during the financial crisis.
Markets been volatile recently and the downbeat outlook for the global economy has negatively hit oil price.
Prices are down about 25% over past five months. The price now about $86 a barrel and analysts at Goldman Sachs forecast this could go on well into 2015, despite previously forecasting prices of around $100 a barrel.
This is good news at the pump, as higher prices tend to feed through.
Another confusing jobs survey …
Job vacancies in financial services are increasing faster in the north of England than in London, while they have "stalled" in Scotland, according to a new study.
Many businesses appear to be moving back office functions out of London. However, these are lower paid jobs, so the moves are nothing for London to worry about seriously.