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Bank ‘won’t be pushed into raising interest sharply’ – David Miles

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The Bank of England won’t be pressured into hiking the Base Rate quickly because inflation is likely to remain relatively low, according to economist David Miles.

Speaking to BBC Radio this morning Miles, a member of the Monetary Policy Committee, which sets the Bank Base Rate, pointed out that inflation is currently below the Bank’s two per cent target, adding:

“That’s very good news because it means that we’re not going to be pushed into raising interest sharply, because the inflation outlook remains pretty subdued.”

His comments follow downbeat wage growth figures released on Wednesday, which showed UK workers earned less in the second quarter of 2014 than they did during the same period in 2013.

The Bank of England governor Mark Carney related the fall in wage growth to slack in the economy, indicating the central bank may take longer to start increasing the cost of borrowing.

Miles said Britons were probably receiving pay rises of around 2% on average, and said that he expected to wages to start outstripping the rate of inflation in 2015.

Miles also suggested that mortgage lenders were likely to charge a higher margin over Bank Base Rate on their products going forward than they have in the past, and that Bank of England Base Rate was likely to run at a “new normal” in future – lower than before the financial crisis.