BoE keeps interest rates at 0.5%

Bank of England BoE Bank 480

The Bank of England’s monetary policy committee has elected to hold the base rate at 0.5 per cent.

The committee has also voted not to extend quantitative easing beyond the existing £375bn provision. The programme has remained unchanged since July 2012 when it was raised by £50bn.

The base rate has remained at the record low level of 0.5 per cent since March 2009.

World First chief economist Jeremy Cook says: “There had been some speculation in the past session that we could see a surprise loosening of monetary policy from the Bank, but that proved to be false.

“It was always unlikely to happen in the month before a Quarterly Inflation report (due mid-February) where we will get a better look at the Bank’s growth and inflation predictions.

“That’s of course not to say that we don’t expect the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) to continue its quantitative easing program through 2013, taking the total amount purchased from its current level of £375bn towards £500bn by the end of the year.”