You are here: Home - Saving & Banking - News -

Bank Rate held at 0.25% despite rising inflation

0
Written by: Paloma Kubiak
11/05/2017
The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee voted by a majority of 7-1 to maintain the Bank Rate at the historic low of 0.25%.

The committee also voted unanimously to continue with the programmes of sterling non-financial investment-grade corporate bond purchases, totalling £10bn, and to maintain the stock of UK government bond purchases at £435bn.

Its decision came as consumer-facing sectors faced a slowdown in the first quarter, partly reflected by the impact of sterling’s depreciation – 16% below its November 2015 peak – although it did appreciate 2.5% between February and May this year.

The depreciation of sterling has also fed through to consumer prices, but the MPC noted the impact was partially offset by continued subdued growth in domestic costs, with wage growth being notably weaker than expected.

However, it said that wage growth is expected to “recover significantly” but as part of its quarterly inflation report also published today, it expects inflation to rise further above the 2% target (currently 2.3%, expected to reach 2.7% in June), again citing the fall in sterling for the overshoot.

Ben Brettell, senior economist at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “The economy is battling some significant headwinds at present, as higher inflation puts the squeeze on consumers’ real incomes ahead of June’s general election and the start of Brexit negotiations. The economy has surprised on the upside since last summer’s referendum, powered by a resilient consumer, but it looks like households are now starting to feel the pinch from the current bout of inflation. The Bank expects inflation to peak a little below 3% in the fourth quarter.

“However, it also looks likely that a pickup in exports and business investment could help offset any weakness in the consumer sector.

“Unsurprisingly interest rates were left unchanged, with just Kristin Forbes voting for a 0.25% rise to 0.5%. However, the Bank also warned that rates may have to rise sooner and faster than the market currently expects. Wage growth, which has been notably lacklustre of late, is seen picking up sharply next year. It might not take much positive economic data to persuade further MPC members to join Forbes and vote to hike rates, though it should be noted that she is due to leave the MPC at the end of June.”

There are 0 Comment(s)

If you wish to comment without signing in, click your cursor in the top box and tick the 'Sign in as a guest' box at the bottom.

Are you a first-time buyer looking for a mortgage?

Look no further, get the help you need by searching for your perfect mortgage

Which ISA is right for you? A round up of the six products available in 2017

From cash to innovative finance to lifetime, here's our guide to the ISA products available to savers this yea...

Guide to buy-to-let tax changes

In late 2015, former Chancellor George Osborne announced a range of  tax measures aimed at landlords, which t...

A guide to switching energy provider

All you need to know about switching from one energy supplier to another.

What will happen if rates change

How your finances will be impacted by a rise in interest rates.

Regular Savings Calculator

Small regular contributions can build up nicely over time.

Online Savings Calculator

Work out how your online savings can build over time.

Five fund tips for a 0.25% interest rate environment

With interest rates stuck at a record low 0.25% and expectations rates could fall to close to zero, here are ...

Protecting family wealth: 10 tips for cutting inheritance tax

Inheritance tax - sometimes known as 'death tax' - can cause even more heartache for bereaved families. But th...

Travel insurance: Five tips to ensure a successful claim

Ahead of your summer holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right level of travel cover or you co...

Investing your money

Alliance Trust Plc gives you smart insight into how to invest your money

Money Tips of the Week

Read previous post:
nuisance calls
PPI claim firm receives record fine over 100 million nuisance calls

A company behind 99.5 million nuisance calls has been fined a record £400,000 by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for...

Close