VINCE Cable yesterday floated the idea of a “more imaginative” form of quantitative easing to kickstart Britain’s economy should it continue to grow at an anaemic rate.
In an unusual intervention for a business secretary, Cable favourably quoted former members of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee, who argued that quantitative easing should be expanded so the Bank can purchase paper other than government securities such as corporate bonds.
Although Cable was careful to point out that a new round of quantitative easing was a matter for the Bank, which is independent of government, his comments could raise eyebrows at Threadneedle Street.
Cable said: If there is a sustained period of weakness, the right approach is not for the government to relax its fiscal discipline, but it is about the Bank of England... using expansion of quantitative easing – perhaps in more imaginative ways, not just acquiring government securities.”
“Members of the Monetary Policy Committee have floated different ideas about how you do quantitative easing. I think that if we have a problem, a continuing problem of weak demand, that’s the way to deal with it.”