LONDON (Reuters) – Bank of England policymakers have broken ranks over interest rates for the first time in three years, with two of them unexpectedly voting to tighten policy, in a move that revives speculation about a 2014 rate hike.
Martin Weale and Ian McCafferty – external members of the BoE’s nine-member Monetary Policy Committee – voted to raise interest rates to 0.75 percent from 0.5 percent, according to minutes of the MPC’s Aug. 6-7 meeting released on Wednesday.
LONDON (Reuters) – The Bank of England is hoping it can gently wean Britain’s economy off record-low borrowing costs, but its plan for “gradual and limited” rises in interest rates might prove harder to pull off than investors expect.
So far, financial markets agree with BoE Governor Mark Carney’s reassurances that a return to more normal-looking monetary policy will probably not be a painful one.
LONDON (Reuters) – The Bank of England dented expectations of a first interest rate hike this year, slashing its forecast for wage growth and saying higher borrowing costs hinged largely on an improved outlook for pay.
Sterling slumped to a 10-week low against the dollar and bond prices rose as traders saw little prospect of a rate rise before 2015, something BoE Governor Mark Carney had urged them to consider as a possibility just two months ago.
LONDON, (Reuters) – The Bank of England slashed its forecast for wage growth on Wednesday and said that how fast wages picked up would be key to determining the timing and pace of interest rate rises.
Just an hour after official data showed British average wages suffered a year-on-year fall in the second quarter of 2014, the BoE cut its forecast for wage growth this year in half to 1.25 percent before picking up more strongly in 2015.
LONDON, Aug 13 (Reuters) – Bank of England Governor Mark
Carney is likely to give little away on Wednesday when he will
be pressed on how soon the central bank will start to raise
Economists and markets are split on whether more than a year
of robust economic growth might prompt the BoE to move as soon
as November, or if persistently weak wage growth and a darkening
international outlook could make it wait until early next year.
LONDON (Reuters) – A year after the Bank of England launched forward guidance on monetary policy, Governor Mark Carney faces the opposite challenge next week – to say as little as possible about exactly when interest rates will start rising.
Carney is due to present the British central bank’s updated economic forecasts at 10:30 AM BST on Wednesday.
LONDON, Aug 6 (Reuters) – Consumers continued to power
Britain’s economy last month as house prices surged and car
sales boomed, although weak industrial output in June was a
reminder that a balanced recovery still looks a way off.
House prices recorded their biggest annual rise last month
since the start of the financial crisis, figures from mortgage
lender Halifax showed on Wednesday, casting doubt on other signs
that the housing market may be slowing.
LONDON, Aug 5 (Reuters) – Britain’s services industry grew
last month at the fastest pace since November, raising the
chance that the rapid economic recovery will continue for the
rest of the year and potentially bringing forward a rise in
The monthly Markit/CIPS purchasing managers index for the
services sector beat economists’ expectations and contrasted
with a mostly downbeat recent string of economic data.
LONDON,(Reuters) – Activity in Britain’s services industry increased last month at the fastest rate since November, helping overall private-sector activity to its briskest growth in three months, a survey showed on Tuesday.
The figures are likely to revive speculation over whether the Bank of England will raise interest rates before the end of the year, and contrast with other data pointing to a slight slowdown in British growth in the second half of the year.
LONDON, Aug 4 (Reuters) – Former Bank of England chief
economist Spencer Dale is leaving the central bank, just two
months after being moved to a new role, to become chief
economist at oil major BP, the BoE said on Monday.
Dale spent six years as the central bank’s chief economist,
where he was responsible for economic forecasts and took a
relatively hawkish line on monetary policy.