Interest rates on hold for March
The Bank of England announced today that its Base Rate will be held at 0.25% during March.
The Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted by eight members to one to maintain rates at its current level.
The Bank noted that ‘there are risks in both directions’ for the economy but said that, ‘monetary policy can respond, in either direction, to changes to the economic outlook as they unfold to ensure a sustainable return of inflation to the 2% target’.
Ian Kernohan, economist at Royal London Asset Management, added: “As expected, the Bank of England have left policy unchanged. GDP growth in the first quarter looks to have been close to their forecast, with some signs of a slowdown in household spending.
“A reduction in the equilibrium unemployment rate, supported by a softening in wage pressures in the latest Labour Market Report, suggests interest rates will remain on hold for now.”
The last time Base Rate was changed was in August 2007, when it was cut from 0.5% to 0.25% – an all-time low.