Interest Rates

Businesses Urged To Unlock Extra £473m In Interest

Businesses Urged To Unlock Extra £473m In Interest

UK small businesses are being urged to shop around for better banking deals and avail of an extra £473m worth of interest. A new study from Cambridge & Counties Bank has revealed that 30% of all business deposit accounts pay just 0.1% interest or less on balances of £25,000 – suggesting millions of small firms are getting a raw deal. Following the August rate cut by the Bank of England, the average rate available for such accounts has declined to 0.41%, 38% down from the start of the year – representing a missed opportunity for small businesses. UK small enterprises currently hold an estimated £69bn in deposit accounts, with business deposits up 3% from last year. Mike Kirsopp, chief executive officer at Cambridge & Counties Bank, said: “There is a significant spread of rates on th... »

BCC: Interest Rates Must Not be Raised in April

Revised government figures which revealed the UK economy is doing slightly better than expected are not a signal to raise interest rates, the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) has warned. According to updated  Office of National Statistics (ONS) figures, the UK economy contracted by 0.5 per cent in the last quarter of 2010, not 0.6 per cent as previously published. The revision means that GDP in the fourth quarter of 2010 is now 1.5 per cent higher than over the same period in 2009. British Chamber of Commerce chief economist, David Kern, said it was reassuring to know the underlying position wasn’t as bad as feared, but that the Bank of England should remain firm on interest rates so as not to destabilise the economy. “We can be reasonably confident that the recovery will con... »

Interest Rates Held at 0.5%

The Bank of England‘s Monetary Policy Committee has voted to keep the bank base lending rate at 0.5% and there will be no further quantitive easing. The decision comes as no surprise but the degree to which members of the MPC voted will only become apparent when the minutes of today’s meeting are published. The last meeting of the MPC saw two members vote for a rise in the base interest rate, which is becoming in increasingly likely as ways to rein-in inflation are sought. The last inflation rate figure, 3.7% in December 2010, is nearly double the target figure of 2%. With the UK economy in a surprise 0.5% decline for the last quarter of 2010, there are fears that economic growth could be stifled by high inflation, led by fuel and food prices, but the historically low interest ... »

Interest Rates Kept at 0.5%

The Bank of England‘s Monetary Policy Committee has held the base interest rate at 0.5% for a record 18th consecutive month in a row. With continued concern over the state of the economy amidst sharp cuts in public spending by the new coalition government the decision was welcomed by David Kern, Chief Economist at the British Chambers of Commerce, who commented: “The MPC made the right decision by leaving interest rates and the quantitative easing programme unchanged this month. However, uncertainty over future interest rate policy is damaging confidence. Businesses cannot properly plan for recovery without clear knowledge that rate rises will be off the agenda for an extended period.” “Global risks of an economic setback appear to be worsening, so the welcome news ... »

Bank of England holds Interest Rate

The Bank of England‘s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) has, once again, kept the base interest rate at 5 per cent for the fourth consecutive month in a row. The decision on whether to cut, maintain or increase interest rates has become increasingly difficult as The Bank of England has maintained a policy of "wait and see" with the state of the UK economy. After last month’s decision to hold rates at 5 per cent the minutes show that seven of the nine MPC members voted to hold the interest rate whilst one member called for a cut and one other for a rise in the cost of borrowing; that’s the first 3-way split since May 2006. The MPC admitted that the economy "remained fragile" in the midst of rising costs for small business, big business and consumers alike... »

Bank of England - Interest Rates Kept at 5%

Interest held at 5%

The Bank of England‘s Monetary Policy Committee has held the base interest rate at 5% for the third consecutive month in a row. Before last month’s rate freeze the Home Builders Federation called for a half point cut to 4.5%, to avoid the slowdown in the housing market. Since then property prices have slipped and in the housebuilding business thousands of jobs have been lost. Yet despite all this inflationary pressures remain with the figure currently at 3.3%, still above Gordon Brown’s target figure of 2%. Costs to business are increasing and economic growth is expected to be less than 2% this year. This puts pressure on the Bank of England to potentially increase interest as a mechanism to control inflation and yet last month the MPC’s decision not to raise intere... »

Bank of England - Interest Rates Kept at 5%

Interest Rates Kept at 5%

The Bank of England‘s Monetary Policy Committee decides to hold the interest rate at 5% for the second consecutive month. On opposing sides of the argument to cut or maintain interest rates were the Home Builders Federation, calling for a half point cut to 4.5%, arguing that the continued slowdown in the housing market could be avoided by such a cut and the British Retail Consortium supporting the move to leave the rates unchanged. After the cut to 5% in April this is the second month in a row that the Monetary Policy Committee has held the interest rate due to inflationary pressures. Inflation rose to 3% in April, well above the government’s target and Gordon Brown’s Golden Rule of an inflationary figure of 2%. In Europe today, the European Central Bank also kept rates a... »

Rates Held at 5.25%

Interest rates stay at 5.25% In line with expectations the Bank of England has kept interest rates steady with no change of the current 5.25% figure. With a slowing economy and increasing inflationary pressures, it seems the BoE’s Monetary Policy Committee is keeping a steady hand on interest rates balancing growth and inflation when compared to the drastic slashing of rates in the US where the figure is down from 5.25% in September last year to just 3% now. Previously the UK interest rate was cut in both December (to 5.5%) and February (to 5.25%) from a recent peak of 5.75% where it had been since July. »

New Year Interest Rate Freeze

Following the usual speculative to-ing and fro-ing regarding the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Comittee decision on the interest rate, the MPC has decided to freeze the interest rate at 5.5%. After mixed results in the High Street this Christmas, with Seasonal Sales at 3 year Low, retailers have been particularly keen for an interest rate cut to boost the spending power of consumers. The TUC had also called for a quarter percent cut in rates to boost economic growth with other quarters calling for a full half percent cut in rates. Add to that increasing inflationary pressures with the inflation rate at 2.1%, a little over the government’s target figure of 2%, plus the recent rate cuts in the US and the fact that the US may or may not be in or heading toward a recession, dep... »

Interest Rates Cut to 5.5%

Small Business News – 6th December 2007 The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee has made the decision to cut the interest rate to 5.50% With the worldwide credit squeeze affecting conusmers and business alike the Bank of England’s MPC has made the rate cut amidst concerns over a potential economic downturn. Recent figures have indicated a slowdown in the property market and even a fall of 1.1% in property prices reported last month. In the last review of the interest rate, where rates were kept at 5.75%, the panel of the MPC voted 7-2 to hold the rates according to minutes released on 21 November. The signs of a potential economic slowdown were much less evident then. This morning’s rate drop is the first since August 2005 and is expected to be a very small ... »

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