The art of expectations management

A bleak outlook from the Bank of England as it scales back rate hike expectations

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The Bank of England has raised rates by 75 basis points today – the eighth successive increase and the largest since 1989 – to 3 per cent, the highest since November 2008. Despite this historic rise, the big news was that the Bank signalled very clearly that market expectations for further rate rises had gone … Continued

Slower for longer

The Bank of England tightens monetary policy again and warns that the outlook is bleak

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The Bank of England today unveiled the biggest rise in interest rates since 1995 along with plans to bring down the stock of Quantitative Easing (QE) by £80 billion over the next year. But the real news in today’s announcements was the extent to which the central bank expects the cost of living crisis to … Continued

In the dread of winter

Prospects for inflation in the coming months ahead of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Report

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In the face of the highest inflation rate for 40 years, many are predicting that the Bank of England will announce the largest interest rate rise in 27 years this week. This spotlight focuses on the challenges and uncertainties facing both the Bank of England and UK families from rising inflation this winter. Contrary to … Continued

Crunch time

Bank of England raises rates again and signals cost of living crisis is set to deliver a £1,200 hit to incomes

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Today the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee raised rates at a fourth successive meeting – a first in the 25 years since it was granted independence – to 1 per cent, a level not seen since the financial crisis. The direct impact of this change in rates on households will be small in the … Continued

Optimism in a time of coronavirus

While undoubtedly gloomy, today’s Monetary Policy and Financial Stability Reports from the Bank of England envisage little lasting damage to the economy or financial system

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Today the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee provided its first major assessment of the impact of coronavirus on the economy. The MPC envisage growth this year to be the weakest in over 300 years, with a fall of 25 per cent expected in the second quarter, and a fall of 14 per cent for … Continued

Helicopters on standby?

With rates at all-time lows, the Bank of England needs a different playbook for this crisis

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With a big recession on the way, the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee would normally be unveiling measures to support the economy today, and this piece would be discussing what they’ve done. But we are not in normal times. Instead, the Bank of England does not have the option of cutting rates in the … Continued

The beginning of the end… …but not the end of the beginning

Governor Carney’s valedictory speech discusses the future of the UK’s monetary policy remit – but this is just the start of an important debate

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The beginning of the end… After several false starts, the appointment of his successor (Andrew Bailey) means Mark Carney finally has a leaving date (15 March). He can now concentrate on the serious business of organising his leaving parties securing his legacy from his longer-than-expected time as Bank of England Governor. That all started yesterday … Continued

Recession ready?

Assessing the UK’s macroeconomic framework

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This report is the launch paper for the Resolution Foundation’s Macroeconomic Policy Unit. It provides the most comprehensive assessment of the UK’s macroeconomic policy framework since the financial crisis, focusing on the ability of the framework to provide effective support to the economy in the face of the next recession. This work is important, given … Continued

Quantitative (displ)easing?

Does QE work and how should it be used next time?

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After the financial crisis, central banks purchased massive amounts of long-term bonds to stimulate economies. These purchases have come to be known as quantitative easing (QE) and have been hugely controversial – barely a third (37 per cent) of UK Members of Parliament, when polled, support its use in future. In theory, QE stimulates the … Continued

A problem shared?

What can we learn from past recessions about the impact of the next across the income distribution?

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While the received wisdom from the 1980s and 1990s recessions was that those at the bottom of the income distribution suffer most during severe downturns. But this was less obvious in the aftermath of the financial crisis. So this briefing note looks at what lessons we can learn from that episode about the distributional impact … Continued

An unhealthy interest? Debt distress and the consequences of raising rates

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Consumer borrowing has been surging over recent months, raising fears that we are storing up more debt-fuelled problems for tomorrow. This note digs into the numbers and focuses on who is taking out all the credit. We consider also how the profile of the UK’s household debt will stand up to increasing interest rates in the coming years.

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