SMPC votes Seven / Two to Hold Bank Rate in September


Housing and Planning

A critique of the Communication Workers Union's rent control proposals

SMPC minutes September 2016
In its September 2016 e-mail poll, the Shadow Monetary Policy Committee (SMPC) elected, by a vote of Eight to One, to hold rates in September. The dissenting votes were for immediate rises in rates — in one case to 1% and in the other to 0.75%.

Those voting were united in their criticism of the Bank of England for being premature in its interest rate cut and additional Quantitative Easing (QE) announcement in August. A number of members noted that that decision looks particularly suspect in the light of the very strong monetary growth figures in the three months to July.

The SMPC is a group of economists who have gathered quarterly at the IEA since July 1997, with a briefer e-mail poll being released in the intermediate months when the minutes of the quarterly gathering are not available. That it was the first such group in Britain, and that it gathers regularly to debate the issues involved, distinguishes the SMPC from the similar exercises carried out elsewhere. To ensure that nine votes are cast each month, it carries a pool of ‘spare’ members. This can lead to changes in the aggregate vote, depending on who contributed to a particular poll. As a result, the nine independent and named analyses should be regarded as more significant than the exact overall vote. The next SMPC poll will be released on Sunday 30th October 2016

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