Bank of England pumps another £100bn into the economy

Time 1 year ago

The Bank of England has agreed to increase its economy-boosting action by £100bn – even though the impact of the coronavirus crisis could be ‘less severe’ than initially feared.

Its monetary policy committee (MPC) voted eight to one to expand the quantitative easing (QE) programme to £745bn, on top of the extra £200bn that was announced in March.

Members were unanimous about holding interest rates at the all-time low of 0.1 per cent, though. There had been speculation they would take the rates below zero for the first time to pull the economy out of its nosedive.

The extra QE – which sees the Bank buy government bonds from investors, thereby pumping money into the economy – comes after official figures showed the economy contracted by a record 20.4% in April.

UK economic growth (GDP). Source: ONS

However, the Bank said the drop in gross domestic product (GDP) between April and June may not be as bad as feared, thanks in part to a recovery in consumer spending and the housing market.

It now believes the second-quarter plunge in UK GDP may be around 20 per cent compared with October to December 2019, rather than the 27 per cent it forecast in May’s report.

That led committee member chief economist Andy Haldane to hold off from voting for more QE.

However, the Bank warned there were risks of ‘higher and more persistent’ unemployment following the crisis.

Record drop in fuel prices in May helps UK inflation fall to lowest level in four years

Lockdown caused UK economy to shrink by more than a fifth in April

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

More stories...

Server 51