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Downing Street plays down talk of Mark Carney tension

William Turvill
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Governor Mark Carney Presents Bank of England's Financial Stability Report
Carney: "The objectives are what are set by the politicians, the policies are done by technocrats" (Source: Getty)

Downing Street appears keen to play down perceived tension between the Prime Minister and governor of the Bank of England, with allies saying he is "highly regarded".

The Bank’s Mark Carney said in a speech on Friday that he would not be told what to do by politicians, adding:

Read more: May you leave us alone? Carney says Bank won't be instructed by politicians

Politicians have done a very good job of setting up the system… Where it can be difficult sometimes is if there are political comments on our policies as opposed to political comments on our objectives. The objectives are what are set by the politicians, the policies are done by technocrats.

This was interpreted as a response to Theresa May questioning the impact of quantitative easing policies at the Conservative party conference earlier this month.

Read more: Theresa May criticises Bank of England for making people poorer

But Downing Street today sought to take some of the sting out of the row by playing tribute to Carney.

A spokeswoman for May said that she respects the independence of the Bank of England, adding: "The Prime Minister is clear in her support for the governor and the leadership he has shown in the past few months".

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