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MPC holds interest rates at Mark Carney’s first meeting

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The monetary policy committee has voted to hold interest rates at 0.5 per cent with no more quantitative easing at Bank of England governor Mark Carney’s first meeting.

Base rate has been held at the same level for more than four years, with the MPC first cutting the benchmark rate to its record-low in March 2009.

QE has been at £375bn since July 2012 when the MPC voted to increase the size of the programme by £50bn.

Carney took over the top job on Monday and is expected to usher in an era of looser monetary policy including longer-term setting of interest rates.

However, there are limits to his powers as former governor Lord Mervyn King was repeatedly outvoted when asking for more QE this year.

Global markets have been volatile since the US Federal Reserve hinted it would begin winding down its QE programme.

Last month King said it would be “premature” to raise rates and suggested central bank support should continue for some time yet.

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