London: The Bank of England is set to keep interest rates on hold at its meeting next week — the last one scheduled before the UK’s current October 31 Brexit deadline.
Governor Mark Carney and the Monetary Policy Committee have been hemmed in by Brexit for months, stuck along with the rest of the country waiting for the uncertainty to end. Policymakers will keep the benchmark rate unchanged at 0.75 per cent on Thursday, according to economists in a Bloomberg survey.
The decision comes amid a wave of global easing that has seen the Federal Reserve and European Central Bank cut rates in recent months.
The Fed is expected to lower borrowing costs again next week.
UK politics has been plunged into further turmoil since new prime minister Boris Johnson suspended Parliament, but not before lawmakers voted to compel him to seek an extension to Brexit negotiations if he doesn’t get a deal.
Johnson will travel to Luxembourg for his first face-to-face talks with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker on Monday, and continues to insist the UK will leave at the end of next month.
Some data are flashing warning signs that the chaos is weighing on the economy, although a report Monday showed the economy expanded more than forecast in July, allaying fears of an imminent recession.
UK inflation data is due out on Wednesday and retail sales for August will be published on Thursday.