Bank of England base rate remains at 0.5%

10-May-18


The Bank of England has today decided to keep the base rate of 0.5%

The freeze was widely expected with Bank of England governor Mark Carney saying last month that "mixed" economic data could delay any increase.

Rates rose for the first time in more than a decade in November, from 0.25%.

The Monetary Policy committee (MPC) said it expects inflation to drift downwards towards 2% over the next two years.

The committee voted unanimously to maintain the stock of sterling non-financial investment-grade corporate bond purchases, financed by the issuance of central bank reserves, at £10 billion.

It also voted unanimously to maintain the stock of UK government bond purchases, financed by the issuance of central bank reserves, at £435 billion.

All members agreed that any future increases in Bank Rate are likely to be at “a gradual pace and to a limited extent.”

The minutes of the meeting added: "In the exceptional circumstances presented by Brexit, as specified in its remit, the MPC has been balancing any significant trade-off between the speed at which it intends to return inflation sustainably to the target and the support that monetary policy provides to jobs and activity.

"The prospect of excess demand over the forecast period has reduced the degree to which it is appropriate for the MPC to accommodate an extended period of inflation above the target.

"The committee’s best collective judgement therefore remains that, were the economy to develop broadly in line with the May Inflation Report projections, an ongoing tightening of monetary policy over the forecast period would be appropriate to return inflation sustainably to its target at a conventional horizon."