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Schroders brings forward interest rate rise forecast

Joanna Faith
Written By:
Joanna Faith

Schroders has brought forward its forecast for the first interest rate rise to February 2015 on the back of the Bank of England’s mixed messages to markets.

The fund group had originally predicted rates to go up in August next year.

However, following the release of the minutes from the Monetary Policy Committee’s (MPC) latest meeting, it said it expects a 0.25% rise to take place each quarter in 2015, taking the end of year forecast to 1.50% – later and lower than priced in by markets.

The minutes, published on Wednesday, revealed that the MPC found it “somewhat surprising” that markets attached a relatively low probability of a rate increase this year.

This echoed Bank governor Mark Carney’s comments during his Mansion House speech last week in which he said a rise in interest rates “could happen sooner than markets currently expect.”

Schroders’ European Economist Azad Zangana, said: “Overall, the messages from the minutes were mixed and somewhat puzzling. Despite the Bank stating that forward guidance would be data dependent, very little new information is available, and even less than would prompt markets to expect higher interest rates sooner as suggested should have been the case by Carney.

“The minutes are packed full of reasons as to why policy should remain unchanged for quite some time, and yet, the Governor felt he needed to change his communication to move financial markets. The Bank of England has clearly had a communication problem since the introduction of data contingent forward guidance, and events over the past week have highlighted the issue further.”