Bank of England Stops Short of Cutting the Interest Rates

04 Août, 2019, 05:10 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
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However, the BoE did not say that it plans to lower interest rates to support the United Kingdom economy, unlike other central banks. "The UK's significant current account deficit (4.4% of GDP) also makes the UK particularly vulnerable to a deterioration in Brexit sentiment", he said in emailed comments.

"Profound uncertainties over the future of the global trading system and the form that Brexit will take are weighing on United Kingdom economic performance", he added.

Nonetheless, the bank is edging toward a more negative outlook not just because of the potentially corrosive effects of Brexit but because of weakening global economic activity.

In a smooth Brexit scenario, rate-setters said growth would accelerate to "robust" levels in the second half of 2020, "reflecting a gradual recovery and firm United Kingdom domestic demand growth, driven in large part by a recovery in investment growth as uncertainties dissipated".

"Pretty much everyone" but Bank of England policymakers "is assuming that the risks of everything but a smooth Brexit have gone up and, secondly, that the impact of such an outcome is quite negative", said Peter Schaffrik, global macro strategist at RBC Capital Markets, an investment bank, in London. These projections are based on the assumption that the United Kingdom will find a deal with the European Union, but the Bank warned growth could be much slower if the United Kingdom crashes out of the union without on WTO terms.

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"I think any heightened rhetoric isn't coming from us", he said. Employment has risen steadily throughout the year, with unemployment levels reaching the lowest point since the 1970s. Also weighing on sterling are signs of a slowdown in the British economy.

But a majority of British lawmakers voted against leaving with no deal in a non-binding parliamentary vote in March, including some from Johnson's own Conservative Party.

Were Britain to leave the European Union in an orderly fashion, the bank said there would be some upside to the British economy as executives breathed a sigh of relief and put in motion dormant investment plans. Its overall goal in setting interest rates is to keep inflation at 2%. But he said the backwash from no deal might cut into economic activity through disruption to trade and other activity.

A report on manufacturing released by IHS Markit on Thursday highlighted the economy's vulnerability.

Though learning about potential tariff schedules or stockpiling resources can help cushion the blow, Carney said there would be an "instantaneous shock" to the economy from a no-deal Brexit that would lead to a further fall in the pound, a spike in inflation and lower growth.

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