Interest rates, Feb 2018 - PwC comments

Feb 08, 2018

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Andrew Sentance, senior economic adviser at PwC, comments on the latest interest rate decision from the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee: 

"It is no surprise to see interest rates being kept on hold this month. But it is still likely that we will see at least one quarter point rise in 2018 and possibly two or three.

"Inflation remains significantly above target and will only fall back gradually as we move through this year, as the Bank of England recognises in its latest forecasts. Global inflationary pressures are building - with rising energy and food prices. And with the unemployment rate at its lowest level for over forty years, we could see some gradual rise in wage inflation.

"Even though recent UK economic growth has been subdued, our economy will receive continued support from strong global growth in 2018. All the three main engines of the global economy - US, Europe and Asia - are performing well this year, and we are now in the best phase of global economic growth we have seen since the financial crisis.

"All this points to rising interest rates, both here in the UK and in other major economies. So today's decision to hold rates is a temporary respite for borrowers. This year and next we are likely to see a gradual and sustained rise in the official Bank Rate, moving us closer to a more normal level of interest rates here in the UK."

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