The Bank of England is widely expected with keep its base rate on hold rate this week, with more economists viewing 2017 as the more plausible option for the first interest rate hike since the financial crisis.
The Bank’s monetary policy committee voted eight to one last month to keep the rate which it deals with the banking system at a record low of 0.5 per cent, where it has been since March 2009.
“The tone of the minutes is likely to remain broadly the same as that of the November meeting, highlighting uncertainty among Committee members and muted underlying inflationary pressures which if anything are biased to the downside,” said economists Fabrice Montagne and Andrzej Szczepaniak from Barclays.
Meanwhile, economists at Citi last week pushed their expectations of the first rate hike into 2017 from late-2016, due mainly to the deflationary pressure created by a strong pound, which make imports cheaper.
Inflation was minus 0.1 per cent October, below the Bank’s two per cent target. It is the joint lowest inflation rate since the 1960s.