Thursday, February 4, 2016
BANK OF ENGLAND VOTES 9-0 TO HOLD AT 0.5%
The Bank of England has voted to keep interest rates on hold once again in its February meeting — as analysts had expected.
The BoE has been on hold as far as interest rates are concerned since March 2009, when the monetary policy committee cut Bank Rate to 0.5%.
All nine members of the MPC voted to keep rates as they were. It's the first unanimous vote since July last year.
While MPC Member Ian McCafferty had voted for a 0.25% rise in previous meetings, he changed his position on deflationary risks from the falling oil price.
Here's the key quote from the Bank of England (emphasis ours):
All members agree that, given the likely persistence of the headwinds weighing on the economy, when Bank Rate does begin to rise, it is expected to do so more gradually and to a lower level than in recent cycles. This guidance is an expectation, not a promise. The actual path Bank Rate will follow over the next few years will depend on the economic circumstances.
And here's Fidelity, the world's second largest fund manager (emphasis ours):
The surprise element, however, was the Monetary Policy Committee’s unanimous vote asIan McCafferty, previously the Bank of England’s lone hawk, capitulated and joined his peers by voting in favour of keeping rates at crisis-era lows. Concerns abound over the outlook for global growth amid worries about emerging markets, in particular China, a slowdown in the US and falling oil prices. Meanwhile earnings growth has dipped below expectations and UK growth has slowed.