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3 former Barclays traders appear on charges related to manipulating key global interest rate

LONDON - Three former Barclays PLC employees appeared in a London court Wednesday on charges related to the rigging of a key market interest rate. Peter Charles Johnson, Jonathan James Mathew and Stylianos Contogoulas are accused of conspiracy in the manipulation of the London interbank offered rate, or LIBOR, between June 1, 2005 and Aug. 31, 2007. They spoke to confirm their names and addresses. Emma Arbuthnot of Westminster Magistrates' Court granted bail.

Bank of England policymaker points to rate rise next spring, but says hikes will be gradual

LONDON - A Bank of England policymaker has suggested that consumers should brace themselves for a rise in interest rates by spring of next year. Martin Weale, one of the Monetary Policy Committee's nine members, told Sky News that communication was important and the bank should explain when the key rate might rise from its record low of 0.5 per cent. He said: "The most likely path for interest rates is that the first rise will come perhaps in the spring of next year, and then the path is likely to be relatively gradual."

Britain could lift rates in spring 2015

Britain's record-low interest rates could start rising in spring 2015, a Bank of England policymaker told Sky News on Thursday. Martin Weale, a member of the central bank's nine-strong Monetary Policy Committee, indicated rates could begin rising from the current level of 0.50 percent before a general election due in May 2015. "I think it is very helpful if we try and explain that the most likely path for interest rates is that the first rise will come perhaps in the spring of next year," Weale told Sky News. "And then the path is likely to be relatively gradual."

Rising UK unemployment eases rate hike pressures

Britain's unemployment rate rose in the quarter to December, official data showed on Wednesday, easing pressure on the Bank of England to raise borrowing costs. The jobless rate climbed to 7.2 percent, up from a near five-year low level of 7.1 percent in the quarter to November, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said in a statement. The Bank of England (BoE) has faced pressure from financial markets to begin raising its main interest rate from a record low-level of 0.50 percent as Britain's economic recovery picks up speed.

S.Africa inflation rises, another rate hike expected

South African consumer prices rose 5.8 percent in January, official statistics showed on Wednesday, tipping the scales towards another interest rate rise when the reserve bank next meets in March. Statistics South Africa reported that consumer prices rose by 0.4 of a percentage point versus December, pushed higher by increased transport and food prices. The 5.8-percent rate was slightly above consensus and is close to the six percent upper end of the South African Reserve Bank's target range.

Three ex-Barclays staff charged in Libor scandal

Britain's Serious Fraud Office on Monday charged three former employees of Barclays over the Libor interest rate-rigging scandal, dealing a fresh blow to the embattled banking giant. The scandal over Libor, an interest rate at the heart of the global economy, has badly damaged the reputation of London's financial centre and several big names in world banking, notably British bank Barclays.

British authorities charge 3 former Barclays employees in inquiry into rigging of market rate

LONDON - Britain's Serious Fraud Office is charging three former Barclays employees in a scandal related to the rigging of a key market interest rate. Authorities say criminal proceedings have begun against Peter Charles Johnson, Jonathan James Mathew and Stylianos Contogoulas for actions between June 1, 2005 and Aug. 31, 2007. A court date has not yet been set to enter pleas.

Bank of England interest rate view broadly in line with forecasters

By Jonathan Cable LONDON (Reuters) - The Bank of England's view that Britain's main interest rate will have risen to about 2 percent in three years is roughly in line with that held by a majority of economists who took part in a Reuters poll on Wednesday. But 32 of 38 disagreed with the Bank's assumption that business investment would rise in double digits this year, something that hasn't happened since just before the financial crisis started.

Barclays must hand over more ex-boss emails in Libor case

By Steve Slater LONDON (Reuters) - Barclays <BARC.L> has been told to hand over thousands more emails and other documents from its former bosses in a UK court case tied to the alleged manipulation of Libor interest rates, which will start in April. In a case being heard at London's High Court, Barclays is accused by a UK residential care home operator of mis-selling products that were based on Libor rates. The hearing will start on April 29 or 30 and is expected to last for about six weeks.

New Zealand cash rate steady but hikes coming

New Zealand's central bank left the official cash rate (OCR) unchanged at a record low of 2.5 percent Thursday but warned it will rise soon as the economy gains momentum. The rate has been on hold since March 2011, when it was lowered to cushion the impact of a devastating earthquake in Christchurch, but the Reserve Bank of New Zealand said it was now ready to return to "more normal levels".
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