Bank of England meeting

The Bank of England’s MPC announcement in February 2019 saw the base rate of interest held at 0.75%. What effect does the base rate have on the UK economy, and what do changes mean for traders?

Call 1800 601 799 or email to talk about opening a trading account. We’re here 24 hours a day, except from 9am to 7pm Saturdays (AEDT).

Contact us: 1800 601 799

Bank of England meeting

The Bank of England’s MPC announcement in February 2019 saw the base rate of interest held at 0.75%. What effect does the base rate have on the UK economy, and what do changes mean for traders?

Call 1800 601 799 or email to talk about opening a trading account. We’re here 24 hours a day, except from 9am to 7pm Saturdays (AEDT).

Contact us: 1800 601 799

Why trade Bank of England meetings with IG?

Speculate on UK stocks and indices

Go long or short on key stocks and indices, such as the FTSE 100

Trade on margin

Trade CFDs to gain full exposure with just a small initial deposit

Effective risk management

Protect your profits and minimise losses with our range of stops, limits and alerts

When is the next interest rate announcement?

The MPC meeting runs over three days in the week prior to an announcement. The next MPC announcement will be made on Thursday 1 August 2019, with minutes from the committee’s meeting published on the same day.

See a full calendar of upcoming MPC dates.

Watch live coverage with IG

You can follow the announcement as it happens with Live With The Experts, when you open an IG account.

How does the Bank of England meeting affect traders?

MPC meetings are important dates in CFD traders’ calendars as they set the official interest rate in the UK. This UK interest rate is the rate at which the Bank will lend money to commercial banks. However it also influences the rates set by commercial banks and other lenders, causing ripple effects across the UK economy. These include changes in demand for bonds, stocks, currency and other securities, as well as consumer spending and inflation. The committee also decides whether quantitative easing (QE) is required. This is a measure the Bank can use to inject money directly into the economy with the aim of boosting spending. Traders and investors need to pay close attention to MPC meetings and adapt their investment strategies and portfolios in response to any policy decisions.

Why is the interest rate important to traders?

Traders search for any indication of what the UK interest rate and monetary policies will be in the future. If they are able to get their predictions right, they can change their strategy ahead of the announcement and maximise their profits. An interest rate hike, for example, is likely to increase the value of the pound but reduce the value of stocks, bonds, indices (e.g. FTSE 100) and other securities. Lowering interest rates or implementing quantitative easing, on the other hand, is likely to have the opposite effect. Traders look at the composition of the MPC and make predictions about the policies each member will vote for, as well as broader economic factors such as Brexit, which could influence the committee.

Markets to watch


Prices above are subject to our website terms and conditions. Prices are indicative only. All shares prices are delayed by at least 15 mins.

In what way does the MPC influence inflation?

The MPC is responsible for setting monetary policy, with the aim of meeting the government’s inflation targets. The MPC has two policy tools which it can use to influence the rate of inflation. These are the BOEBR and asset purchase facility (APF), both of which allow the Bank to influence the supply of money across the economy.

Setting the UK interest rate

The Bank of England Base Rate (BOEBR), also known as the official bank rate, is the rate of interest charged by the BoE to commercial banks for overnight loans. It is the base rate of interest for the UK economy and has a strong impact on the short and long term interest rates charged by commercial banks. When the base rate is lowered, banks are encouraged to borrow more money from the BoE and lower their own interest rates. This reduces the cost of borrowing for businesses and consumers, enabling them to borrow and spend more. Conversely, if the base rate rises, borrowing money from the BoE is discouraged, leading banks to increase their own interest rates. This increases the cost of capital for businesses and consumers, making borrowing more expensive and incentivising saving. These effects ripple across the global economy, affecting the financial markets, FX rates, and eventually economic factors like unemployment and inflation.

Quantitative easing

Quantitative easing (QE) is the process by which a bank creates new money electronically and uses it to purchase assets. The BoE’s QE programme is called the asset purchase facility (APF) and has mainly been used to buy government bonds from private sector businesses, plus a limited number of high quality commercial bonds. This injection of cash into the economy increases the demand for the purchased assets, causing their prices to rise and their yields to fall. Those selling the bonds will therefore look to invest the proceeds elsewhere to maximise their return, resulting in a money multiplier effect. The result of this cash injection is therefore wide-ranging, affecting spending and the liquidity of assets across the economy and reducing the cost of borrowing for businesses and consumers. If inflation rates increase beyond the government’s target, the MPC has the ability to sell a portion or all of its assets to reverse the effect.

Bank of England meeting dates

The MPC meets eight times a year, following a briefing by Bank of England staff, with each meeting lasting a total of three days. The meetings involve a discussion of the latest economic data from the Bank of England and what policies should be implemented to help the MPC achieve its aims.

The committee votes on the third day, with the interest rate decision published the following Thursday at 12pm (UK time). The committee also publishes an inflation report after every other meeting.

2019 MPC dates

Date of MPC announcement Inflation report publication
7 February Yes
21 March No
2 May Yes
20 June No
1 August Yes
19 September No
7 November Yes
19 December No

Who are the key people on the MPC?

The MPC is made up of five members of the Bank of England – the governor, three deputy governors and the chief economist – and four economic experts appointed by the chancellor of the exchequer.

Each member has one vote with the governor voting last; this makes their vote decisive in case of a tie. All members serve fixed terms (three years for HM Treasury appointees) before being replaced or reappointed.

Analysts will often try to predict what policies committee members will vote for by classifying them as monetary hawks and doves.

2019 committee members

Name Title Monetary outlook1
Mark Carney Governor of the Bank of England Hawk
Ben Broadbent Deputy governor for monetary policy Centrist
Sir David Ramsden Deputy governor for markets and banking Centrist
Jon Cunliffe Deputy governor for financial stability Centrist
Andy Haldane Executive director, monetary analysis and chief economist Hawk
Ian McCafferty External member Hawk
Michael Saunders External member Hawk
Gertjan Vlieghe External member Hawk
Silvana Tenreyro External member Dove

Open an account now

Fast execution on a huge range of markets

Enjoy flexible access to more than 17,000 global markets, with reliable execution

Trade seamlessly, wherever you are

Trade on the move with our natively designed, award-winning trading app

Feel secure with a trusted provider

With 45 years of experience, we’re proud to offer a truly market-leading service

What is the Bank of England’s MPC meeting?

The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting is a regular session held by the MPC, in which it sets the UK’s base interest rate (and other monetary policies). The committee’s aim is to choose an interest rate that will enable the government’s inflation target to be met. This target is currently 2%.

You might be interested in…

Learn how to trade the reaction to FOMC meetings across 90 currency pairs

Buy or sell Wall Street and the US 500, 24 hours a day

Go long or short on 13,000 global stocks, including Apple and Facebook

1 The views of each member are not fixed and are likely to vary over time as a result of changes in the economy and the government’s inflation rate targets. This table illustrates where MPC members are thought to stand at the time writing (18 October 2017).