European markets mixed ahead of BOE rate decision; BT shares dive 8%


Politics has been a major focus over the course of this week, from an election result in Asia and the easing of geopolitical tensions to the news that President Donald Trump would be pulling the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear accord.

After the news broke about Iran on Tuesday, oil prices have been on the rise and continued to extend gains on Thursday, with Brent hovering around $77.75 per barrel, while U.S. crude fluctuated around $71.70. Following the U.S. announcement, allies in Europe have been trying to salvage the Iran deal, and preserve their trade relations with the Middle Eastern nation.

Markets in Asia edged higher, lifted by a rise in oil prices as investors digested news out of Malaysia. On Thursday, it was announced that Mahathir Mohamad had led an opposition coalition to victory in the country’s national election.

Back in Europe, the Bank of England (BOE) is expected to issue its latest interest rate decision and publish its inflation report. During Thursday’s meeting, the BOE’s Monetary Policy Committee is projected to hold fire on changing its interest rate strategy, despite analysts previously expecting a different outcome in recent weeks.

Last month, short-term interest rates had been pricing in another 25 basis point rate hike with near certainty, however, BOE Governor Mark Carney suppressed expectations following comments during a BBC interview, where he said that data was coming in on the “softer side.”

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