February 07, 2019
The BOE sharply downgraded its 2019 economic outlook to 1.2 percent on Thursday. As recently as November, the Bank had projected growth of 1.7 percent this year.
That revision means policymakers at the central bank now expect Britain to grow at its slowest pace since the global financial crisis.
Sterling fell 0.6 percent shortly after midday, before paring some its losses to trade at $1.2920 at 1:10 p.m. London time.
The Bank of England (BOE) warned on Thursday the U.K. is on track to register its weakest economic growth in a decade, blaming mounting Brexit uncertainty and a global slowdown.

With just 50 days to go before the country leaves the European Union, the BOE’s nine-member Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), led by Mark Carney, unanimously voted to leave interest rates unchanged at 0.75 percent.
“U.K. economic growth slowed in late 2018 and appears to have weakened further in early 2019,” policymakers at the central bank said.
“This slowdown mainly reflects softer activity abroad and the greater effects from Brexit uncertainties at home,” they added.
Sterling fell 0.6 percent shortly after midday, before paring some its losses to trade at $1.2920 at 1:10 p.m. London time.

Economic growth
The BOE sharply downgraded its 2019 economic outlook to 1.2 percent on Thursday. As recently as November, the Bank had projected growth of 1.7 percent this year.
That revision marks the biggest cut of the its growth forecasts since the period immediately after the Brexit referendum in 2016. It also means policymakers at the central bank now expect Britain to grow at its slowest pace since the global financial crisis.
For 2020, overall economic growth is expected to slow to 1.5 percent, from 1.7 percent.
Further to this, BOE Governor Mark Carney said falling oil prices would likely push inflation below its target of 2 percent in the near-term, before bouncing back and settling “a little above” target in a year’s time.
Elsewhere, the Federal Reserve has signaled to financial markets that its three-year run of interest rate hikes is coming to an end. Meanwhile, the European Central Bank (ECB) has acknowledged a slowdown in the euro zone and China is looking to stimulate its economy after registering its slowest pace of growth in three decades last year.
Bank of England sees weakest outlook for the UK since 2009 amid Brexit uncertainty
The Bank of England’s interest rate decision and economic projections come as Prime Minister Theresa May meets with EU leaders in Brussels. She is looking to convince the bloc to consider making legally binding changes to the Brexit deal.
“The fog of Brexit is creating tension in financial markets,” Mark Carney said during a press conference on Thursday.
“Now, how these tensions are reconciled once the fog lifts will have consequences for the path of monetary policy in ways that cannot be predicted in advance,” he added.
The thorny subject of the Irish “backstop ” — something of an insurance policy designed to prevent a hard border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland if there’s no trade deal between the U.K. and EU — will be the main topic of debate.
May is seeking changes to the backstop arrangement within the Brexit deal (known formally as the “Withdrawal Agreement”) because of widespread objection to it in the U.K. Parliament.
“There’s an upside. If there’s clarity on the deal sooner and we know the direction we’re headed sooner and there’s a smooth transition to that destination... we would expect the economy to pick up even more than in this forecast,” Carney said.

Inflation risks
With a transition deal still not on the table, market participants are increasingly worried about the prospect of the world’s fifth-largest economy abruptly leaving the bloc without a deal.
Should that happen, the BOE has said it would consider raising rates to offset a likely slump in the value of sterling.
However, most economists believe the Bank is more likely to cut rates to cushion a widely-expected blow to the economy.
“I think that the Bank does want to keep its options open and it does want to send a signal. Don’t expect us to necessarily be cutting interest rates on a hard Brexit if the inflation risks are too strong,” Jane Foley, head of FX strategy at Rabobank, told CNBC on Thursday.
The previous change in interest rates in the U.K. came in August last year, when the central bank raised rates by a quarter of a percentage point to their highest level since March 2009.
The U.K. is expected to leave the bloc at 11:00 p.m. London time on March 29.
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Star Wars Director Says It's About Time A Woman Makes A Star Wars Movie
Jan 02, 2024
Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Sharmeed Obaid-Chinoy is directing an upcoming Star Wars movie that brings back Daisy Ridley in the role of Rey. Obaid-Chinoy will become the first woman to direct a Star Wars film, dating back to the franchise's origins in the 1970s. Speaking about this, Obaid-Chinoy told CNN that she is "very thrilled" to make the movie and create something that is "very special.""We're in 2024 now, and I think it's about time we had a woman come forward to shape the story in a galaxy far, far away," she said.Obaid-Chinoy won Best Documentary, Short Subjects Academy Awards for Saving Face (2012) and A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness (2015).In 2020, Lucasfilm boss Kathleen Kennedy told the BBC that a woman would eventually direct a Star Wars movie, saying that would "absolutely" happen, "without question." Victoria Mahoney was a second unit director on The Rise of Skywalker, but a woman has never claimed a top directing credit on a Star Wars movie.On the TV side of things, The Mandalorian has featured a number of female directors, including Deborah Chow and Bryce Dallas Howard. Chow went on to direct the Obi-Wan TV series, too.Another high-profile franchise that has never had a female director is James Bond. Producer Barbara Broccoli and Skyfall director Sam Mendes have both said they want to see a woman direct a future 007 film.As for Obaid-Chinoy's Star Wars movie, little is known about it apart from the fact that Ridley will come back to play Rey. It is expected that this film will be the first of the three new Star Wars films to come to theaters, possibly releasing in December 2025.According to a report, Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight is writing the Rey movie, taking over for Damon Lindelof and Justin Britt-Gibson.
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NBA Names Clare Akamanzi CEO Of NBA Africa
Jan 02, 2024 15:29
The NBA named Clare Akamanzi – an accomplished business executive and international trade and investment lawyer – as CEO of NBA Africa. Akamanzi will start her position on Jan. 23, 2024, and report to NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum. In this role, Akamanzi will oversee the NBA’s business and basketball development efforts in Africa and will be responsible for continuing to grow the popularity of basketball, the NBA and the Basketball Africa League (BAL) across the continent, including through grassroots basketball development, media distribution, corporate partnerships, and social responsibility initiatives that improve the livelihoods of African youth and families. For the last six and a half years, Akamanzi was CEO of Rwanda Development Board (RDB), where she spearheaded Rwanda’s economic development by enabling private sector growth. Under Akamanzi’s leadership, RDB implemented several business policy reforms and initiatives that led to significant investment and development for the country, including through partnerships with the BAL, Arsenal FC, Paris Saint-Germain FC, FC Bayern Munich and TIME Magazine, among others. “Clare’s business acumen, international experience and familiarity with basketball and the NBA make her the ideal executive to lead our business in Africa,” says Tatum. “NBA Africa and the Basketball Africa League are well-positioned for continued growth, and under Clare’s leadership we believe these initiatives will transform economies, communities and lives across the continent.” “I’ve seen firsthand how sports can positively impact businesses, families and communities in Africa, and the NBA and the BAL are a perfect example of that,” says Akamanzi. “The NBA has done an incredible job growing basketball and the economy around it across the continent, and I’m excited about the enormous opportunities ahead to build on that momentum.” Previously, Akamanzi was Chief Operating Officer of RDB and Head of Strategy and Policy Unit, Office of the President of the Republic of Rwanda. She has extensive international trade, business and diplomatic experience, having previously worked for the Rwandan Government at the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland and at the Rwandan Embassy in London, England. Akamanzi has worked or studied in seven different countries and holds an honorary LLD from Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, in recognition of her work in Rwanda. She earned a master’s degree in public administration from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she was the recipient of three prestigious awards for academic excellence and distinguished contribution to the community: the Lucius N. Littauer Fellows Award, the Raymond & Josephine Vernon Award and the Robert Kennedy Public Service Award. In addition, Akamanzi holds a Master of Laws degree in international trade and investments from the University of Pretoria in South Africa, and a Bachelor of Laws degree from Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda. Akamanzi has served on several company boards, including the World Health Organization (WHO) Foundation, ECOBANK and Aviation, Travel and Logistics (ATL) company. She was recognized by Forbes as one of Africa’s Top 50 Powerful Women in 2020.
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