Today the Bank of England dumped a lot of data on everyone when, for the first time, they simultaneously released the Bank of England’s MPC Base Rate decision, the Minutes of the meeting and the latest Inflation report as well as some other economic data.
- The Bank of England Base Rate is unchanged at 0.5%
- The doves remained in control with only 1 member voting for a rate rise to 0.75%, many expected 2 or even 3 to vote for rise
- The size of the Asset Purchase Programme remains at £375 billion
- CPI inflation fell back to zero in June and is expected to stay close to that over the coming months, picking up slower than expected after a further slump in oil prices and returning to 2% in 2 years
- Domestic recovery is still quite strong though over last quarter employment has not risen whilst wages have
- Expectation now of 3% wage growth and 1.25% employment growth this year
- Global growth still muted due to ongoing talks around Greece and also the stock market collapse in China
This is much more dovish than many people expected and again highlights that expectations garnered from Mr Carney’s recent comments around rate rises at the turn of the year were a little misplaced. Given today’s statements many expect no such move until May next year.
This means that we may well see mortgage rates stabilise once more for a short period, especially as lenders still seem to be a way off their targets set at the beginning of the year. This competitive pressure more than anything else will help to keep rates at a low level.
As always however, the closer we do get to rate rises the more we will see the current crop of low fixes disappear, especially as it still seems evident that the next change will be upwards. Borrowers should definitely be assessing their options over the remainder of the year to ensure that they do not miss out, especially for those who would find a rate rise uncomfortable to deal with.
So, was it a Super Thursday after all or more of the same with a little more hype?