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Power Sharing Collapses Between the SNP and Greens

Friday feeling, power sharing agreement collapsed between SNP's and Greens, and benchmark interest rate maintained by Bank of Japan.

Friday Feeling

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Wild Horses – The Rolling Stones

Hush – Kula Shaker

Coalition – Laurent Julliet

Go Your Own Way – Fleetwood Mac

All The Way From America – Joan Armatrading

Power Sharing Collapses Between the SNP and Greens

Yesterday morning the political drama in Holyrood reached its zenith when the SNP’s power sharing agreement with the Greens collapsed. It’s understood that Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf abandoned the power sharing agreement, just hours after he indicated that he wanted the partnership to continue.

The official spokesperson of the Scottish Government said that Yousaf’s decision was “enthusiastically endorsed” by his cabinet and its understood that he will try to lead Holyrood as a minority government.

Ever since the Bute House agreement of 2021 the Greens and SNP have been in a cooperation pact which has seen the two parties work together in the Scottish Parliament.

As the Scottish Parliament is made up of 129 seats (of which the SNP hold 63), the Green’s 7 Seats was crucial in taking Yousaf’s party above the 65 seats needed to command a majority. With the SNP and Greens holding 70 seats between them, this outnumbered the Conservatives 31 seats, Labour’s 22, the Lib Dems 4 and Alba’s 1.

Yesterday afternoon the Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross tabled a vote of no confidence in the First Minister, though given that MSPs get two sitting days’ notice on such a vote, it looks possible that it will take next Thursday. Its unclear however which way the Greens will vote or whether some or all may abstain.

If the Greens vote against Yousaf but Alba’s Ash Regan votes with the SNP its likely there could be a 64-64 seat tie. In this instance convention indicates that the Presiding Officer’s deciding vote would maintain the current state of affairs meaning that its likely Yousaf would stay in power.

The political turmoil at the seat of Scottish power comes in the same week that Nicola Sturgeon’s husband, Peter Murrell, has been charged in an SNP finance probe. Murrell served as the SNP’s chief executive is facing accusations of embezzling funds.

This comes alongside part of a wider police investigation named “Operation Branchform” which started in 2021 and seeks to investigate the SNP party’s finances for a “pro-independence fighting fund”.

Bank of Japan Holds Rates

This morning the Bank of Japan maintained their benchmark interest rate at its 0% to 0.1% target range, meeting expectations. This follows the BoJ’s decision last month to raise interest rates for the first time since 2007, in a move which brought an end to eight years of negative rates.

The Central Bank also indicated that there would be no change to their existing bond buying policy which sees the central bank purchase around ¥6tn a month in government bonds.

The Bank of Japan continues to struggle with rising inflation, and policy makers this morning upwardly revised inflation expectations from 2.4% in January to 2.8% today. However, Japan’s ultra loose monetary policy – alongside expectations of tighter monetary conditions across other major economies – continues to put pressure on the yen.

As such the BoJ said that “It is necessary to pay due attention to developments in financial and foreign exchange markets and their impact on Japan’s economic activity and prices”.

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