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​​​​Bank of England preview – Caution prevails as rates expected to stay unchanged

​​This week’s Bank of England decision is likely to see ‘no change’ triumph once more, as policymakers err on the side of caution.

Bank of England Source: Bloomberg

​​​No change as MPC awaits clearer inflation data

​The Bank of England's (BoE) Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is widely anticipated to keep the nation's main interest rate unchanged when it announces its latest policy decision on Thursday. Market experts suggest the nine-member panel will opt to hold the Bank Rate steady at 4.25% as it monitors evolving inflation dynamics in the UK economy.

​MPC still split on next move

​At the previous MPC gathering in February, the voting pattern revealed a split among policymakers. While seven members voted to maintain rates, two favoured a quarter-point rate hike to intensify inflation-fighting efforts. Notably, one MPC member advocated for a rate cut, underscoring the complexities surrounding the appropriate monetary policy stance.

​Q3 rate cut still expected

​Despite the current holding pattern, financial markets and most analysts anticipate the BoE will eventually pivot toward easing monetary conditions. Futures pricing indicates growing expectations for a rate cut as early as the third quarter (Q3) of this year, reflecting hopes that stubbornly high inflation will begin to moderate.

​Unlike some previous MPC meetings, the rate decision on Thursday will not be accompanied by a press conference from Governor Andrew Bailey. This occurs every other month, leaving market participants to scrutinise the published policy summary and voting details for potential clues about the BoE's future policy leanings.

​BoE strikes a balance between worrying about inflation and growth

The MPC's deliberations continue to grapple with the challenge of reining in elevated inflation while avoiding an overly restrictive stance that could exacerbate risks of an economic downturn. Recent data releases, including consumer price inflation figures and labour market dynamics, will factor into the committee's assessment of the appropriate policy path.

​As the UK economy navigates uncertain terrain, the BoE's cautious approach underscores the complexities of calibrating monetary policy in an environment marked by persistent inflationary pressures and potential growth headwinds.

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Bank of England meeting

An in-depth look at the effects of the BoE’s interest rate announcement ahead of the next MPC meeting on 20 June 2019.

  • What was decided at the last BoE meeting?
  • How does the MPC influence inflation?
  • How might the pound be affected by the next meeting?

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