MPC more optimistic, but no more hawkish

Other than the Monetary Policy Committee noting the growing upside risks to inflation alongside today’s policy decision, there were no real signs that it is thinking about tightening policy sooner, à la the Fed. We think policy will be tightened much later than the mid-2022 date the markets have assumed. We are hosting a Drop-In at 1400 BST/0900 ET on Thursday 24th June shortly after the MPC meeting to discuss if the Bank of England will soon follow the Fed by signalling a willingness to bring forward the withdrawal of policy support. You can register here.
Paul Dales Chief UK Economist
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UK Economics Weekly

Economy less favourable for whoever’s in Number 10

Although it is hard to predict whether by the end of next week Boris Johnson’s reign as Prime Minister will be solidifying or crumbling, we know that whoever is in Number 10 over the next year will have to deal with the cost of living crisis. Our forecast that inflation will rise to a little above 7% explains why we think GDP growth this year will fall short of the consensus forecast and why we think interest rates will be raised further than most expect, from 0.25% now to 1.25% by the end of the year. Drop-In (14:00 GMT, 26th Jan): UK Outlook -- More inflation, more interest rate hikes. Join our UK Economics team for a briefing on the 2022 outlook, including why we’re below consensus on growth but think the BoE will raise rates more than most expect. Register here.

21 January 2022

UK Data Response

Retail Sales (Dec.)

The fall in retail sales volumes in December was bigger than expected and supports our view that the Omicron outbreak in the run-up to Christmas may have dragged down GDP by 0.5% m/m, if not more.

21 January 2022

UK Economics Update

Real wage squeeze unlikely to be a rerun of 2008-14

The looming squeeze on real wages means that the near-term outlook for consumption and GDP has weakened. That said, we don’t expect anything as bad as the squeeze in 2008-14. In fact, real household disposable income may well recover by early 2023.

20 January 2022

More from Paul Dales

UK Economics Update

CPI inflation may peak around 4%

Bigger rises in commodity and component costs than we had expected mean that we now think CPI inflation will rise from 2.1% in May to a peak of about 4.0% around the turn of the year. But we still think this will be a short, sharp spike in inflation that won’t feed into persistently faster pay growth or higher inflation expectations for a couple of years yet. As such, we suspect the Monetary Policy Committee will look through it and won’t tighten policy as soon mid-2022 as the financial markets expect.

6 July 2021

UK Data Response

GDP (Q1 Final)

The small downward revision to Q1 GDP growth probably won’t stop the economy from rising back to its pre-pandemic peak in the coming months. And the larger-than-expected rebound in the household saving rate increases the potential for faster rises in GDP further ahead.

30 June 2021

UK Economics Update

Recovery evolving rather than stalling

The recent softening in some indicators of activity is probably mostly a result of shifts in spending patterns within the economy rather than a sign that the recovery has already stalled. As such, we still expect monthly GDP to rise back to its pre-pandemic level by the autumn.

29 June 2021
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