Super Thursday: Bank of England keep rates on hold at 0.25pc

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This implies Brexit has been a key reason as the fall in the value of sterling since the European Union referendum has led to imports becoming more expensive, thus increasing prices for consumers.

He cautioned that the pressure on families would continue for the next few quarters, with Britain in the "teeth" of the income squeeze and real wages at their weakest since the middle of the 19th century.

The uncertainties are also affecting Bank policy, according to Yael Selfin, chief economist at accountant KPMG.

There may be scope for Bank Rate to rise "a little bit", a top official at the Bank of England said.

"The BOE's attempts to prepare markets for future hikes have fallen on deaf ears for now which could mean volatility in these instruments remains for the foreseeable future as we try to make sense of both the economic and monetary policy environment", he said.

Mr Broadbent said the Bank's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) believed there would need to be more rate rises than those expected by the financial markets.

The Monetary Policy Committee voted by a majority of 6-2 to maintain the Bank Rate at 0.25%, where it has been since last August.

The Bank of England's August Inflation Report shows 2017 inflation increasing slightly more than expected in the May report, and GDP growth remaining more sluggish than expected as a result.

The MPC's updated macro assessment involved a modest downgrade to GDP growth, with the inflation forecast broadly unchanged from May, conditional on a somewhat steeper money market curve. Consequently the task of determining just what effect Brexit had on the United Kingdom economy will mostly fall on the shoulders of tomorrow's historians, rather than today's economists'.

The BoE has also brought an end to its Term Funding Scheme which was introduced to offer cheap funding to banks from February next year.

All members have agreed that any increases in the bank rate will be gradual and limited.

"If UK households and businesses look through the flurry of headlines, then the economy can be expected to pick up from its current period of sluggishness". Such a sharp rise reflected sterling's fall from 1.48 US dollars to the pound on the night of the referendum vote previous year to 1.31 USA dollars now, having touched as low as 1.22 USA dollars in between. For 2018, it expects growth of 1.6 per cent, down from 1.7 per cent previously.

Households have seen their spending power come under sustained pressure from lacklustre wage growth and higher inflation, leading to an expansion of credit and a decline in savings.

"There have been concerns about the instore sales and are Next going to be able to shift towards consumer patterns - (we're) starting to see more of an online presence as well in the Directory", said Jonathan Roy, advisory investment manager at Charles Hanover Investments.

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