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Fewer than one in 10 expect interest rates to rise in August

Written by: Antonia Di Lorenzo
Experts say the only way is up for interest rates, but pinning down when they will rise has proved difficult
Fewer than one in 10 expect interest rates to rise in August

Fewer than one in 10 people are expecting the Bank of England to raise the base rate in August, while the market is currently pricing in a 85.4% chance of a rise, data showed.

Just 8.4% of people expect a rate rise next month, according to July’s IHS Markit Household Finance survey.

Some 29.8% expect a rate rise in the next three months, 50.6% expect a rise within the next six months, and 74.3% expect a rise within the next 12 months.

In April this year, markets were roughly as convinced of an imminent rate rise as they are now.

However, individuals were less so, and in fact only 6.6% expected a rate rise in May.

In that instance, of course, the consumers got it right.

Sarah Coles, personal finance analyst at financial service company Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “We know from May’s rate-rise-that-never-happened that the markets can get these things spectacularly wrong, but it’s worth considering the risks if they happen to have got it right this time.

“Borrowers who expect interest rates to stay put may be lulled into a false sense of security and stick with their mortgage lender’s standard variable rate, while savers may be chasing inflation-busting returns by signing up to long term fixes, without considering the possibility that rates will rise in the interim.

“Of course nobody can say for certain what’s going to happen to rates, so any decision should always be based on your own circumstances and priorities rather than speculation about future rates.

“However, when making financial decisions, it’s important to bear in mind that there’s a chance we will face a rising interest rate environment in the relatively near future, and factor in what it means for our finances.”

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