U.S. News

BoE Voted 9-0 for Quarter-Point Hike in May, Mulled Half-Point Move


Some Bank of England policymakers considered voting for a half-point interest rate hike this month before they all decided to raise rates by 25 basis points and agreed a further rise may be needed in time.

The minutes from the May 9-10 meeting published on Wednesday showed those members who had mulled a bigger move in the end thought it better to wait for more data to see how four hikes to 5.5% since August had affected the economy.

"The Committee agreed that, should the economy continue to develop broadly in line with the central expectation, Bank Rate could be raised further as necessary," the minutes said.

Bank of England Minutes Published

Analysts had been expecting at least one member to have opposed this month's hike and, as such, the unanimous result and discussion of an unprecedented half-point hike is likely to cement expectations for at least one more rise soon.

The MPC has never hiked rates by 50 basis points since it was set up in 1997.

"Some members argued that, given the uncertainties around both the outlook for inflation and the impact of interest rate changes, it was better to move cautiously," the minutes said.