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Press Releases Policy publications - Productivity & growth

‘Wait-and-see’ is Bank’s only option on rates for now

07 Feb 2019

bank of englandResponding to the Bank of England’s decision to hold interest rates at 0.75%, Tej Parikh, Senior Economist at the Institute of Directors, said:

“With just 50 days until Brexit, businesses will find comfort in the Bank’s decision to bide its time before embarking on rate hikes.

“Right now, many firms have little appetite to invest in the midst of uncertainty while there are also signs that consumer confidence is waning, so it’s important that interest rates remain low.

“It’s clear that domestic political events are not the only thing giving the MPC a headache. A subdued outlook for global growth, tied to the EU and China’s slowing economies, is likely to have a knock-on impact on UK trade, and that’s contributed to the Bank’s bigger than expected cut to UK growth forecasts.

“Understandably, the MPC has struck a fairly cautious tone today. While promising wage figures may be a harbinger of higher inflation down the line, the known unknowns and global picture mean that ‘wait-and-see’ seems the only option for now.”

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