Bank of England Holds Benchmark Interest Rate Steady
By Jason Douglas
LONDON--The Bank of England held its benchmark interest rate
steady and said the U.K. economy will take until the end of next
year to make up the ground lost during the coronavirus
The BOE said in a statement that its Monetary Policy Committee
agreed unanimously to hold the central bank's benchmark interest
rate at 0.1% and the target for its asset-buying program at 745
billion pounds ($977 billion).
Officials said the economy probably shrank around 20% in the
second quarter as a nationwide lockdown to contain the coronavirus
outbreak was in place. Consumer spending has picked up fast since
restrictions were eased, the committee said, but business
investment is subdued and unemployment is expected to rise.
"The recovery in demand takes time as health concerns drag on
activity," the panel said. Gross domestic product won't rise to the
level it was at the end of 2019 until the end of 2021, it said.
The committee said it expects a substantial degree of slack in
the economy to persist for the next year and keep inflation below
its 2% target, implying officials will be in no hurry to adjust
Write to Jason Douglas at Jason.Douglas@wsj.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
August 06, 2020 02:41 ET (06:41 GMT)
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