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Challenger bank CEO calls for Bank of England rate cut

09 February 2019

In minutes of the latest rates decision, the Bank said: 'Since the Committee's previous meeting, key parts of the European Union withdrawal process had remained unresolved and uncertainty had intensified.

Brexit is causing the United Kingdom economy to weaken, it said, cutting its 2019 growth forecast to just 1.2%, the lowest since the financial crisis.

The Bank of England lowered the United Kingdom growth forecast due to Brexit uncertainties as businesses are holding back the investment.

Barry McAndrew, ‎fixed income senior portfolio manager at State Street Global Advisors, EMEA, said: "The committee seem happy to wait for some clarity on Brexit negotiations and the economies response to it, before making their next move".

He said: "The fog of Brexit is causing short term volatility in the economic data, and more fundamentally, it is creating a series of tensions in the economy, tensions for business".

The Reserve Bank of India's monetary policy committee (MPC) cut the repo rate by 25 basis points to 6.25 percent, as forecast by 21 of 65 analysts polled by Reuters.

Carney said that the possibility of a "no-deal" Brexit has gone up since the aftermath of the Brexit vote in 2016, when it was considered unlikely.

The Bank's quarterly inflation report suggested rates may not rise until the second half of 2020, with financial markets only pencilling in one rate rise over the next three years.

With Brexit uncertainty wreaking havoc on the economy, that will be the lowest annual rate of growth since 2009. The Government's regulations, as already enacted, are weakening the impact of the monetary policy, the central bank warned.

In recent weeks, other major central banks have also sharply reversed policy in the face of rising growth risks, with pressure on businesses most notably stemming from a U.S.

Sterling dropped around 0.4 per cent immediately after the bank's cut growth forecasts, sliding to $1.286.

This is being driven by sharp falls in business investment, as well as a drop in consumer spending and signs of a weaker United Kingdom housing market.

Officials said that potential supply growth is now a "little below" the 1.5 per cent previously estimated.

Although it did hold out the hope of a recovery later this year if an orderly deal is negotiated by the March deadline. Nevertheless, the forecasts suggested that just one more quarter-point hike would be needed in the next three years to return inflation to close to the 2 percent target, down from nearly three hikes seen in November.

Policymakers slashed their GDP growth forecasts for this year to just 1.2% from the previous 1.7% estimate. The Federal Reserve has changed direction, and now many analysts expect no USA rate hikes this year, after four in 2018.

In its minutes, the Bank continued to stress that interest rate rises were likely to be needed "at a gradual and to a limited extent" to bring inflation back to target by 2022.

Challenger bank CEO calls for Bank of England rate cut