Bank base rateBank of England votes 8-1 to hold rates at 0.5%

UK interest rates have been left unchanged again at 0.5% by the Bank of England’s rate-setters.

The nine rate-setters on the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted 8-1 for no change, predicting that inflation would stay below 1% until the second half of next year.

Ian McCafferty, one of four external members of the MPC, was the only one to vote for a rate rise.

He also voted for a quarter-point rise at each of the previous four meetings.

It is the 81st meeting in a row at which rates have been left unchanged at 0.5%.

The minutes of the meeting showed policymakers concentrated on the continuing subdued inflation environment.

Inflation as measured by the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) stood at -0.1% in October and the rate-setters predicted it would be slightly positive in November.

The MPC’s job is to keep CPI close to the government’s target of 2.0%.

Last week, the European Central Bank took steps to boost the eurozone economy, cutting its overnight deposit rate and extending its €60bn stimulus programme by six months.

But the Federal Reserve in the US is widely expected to raise rates at its policy meeting next week.

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