Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Good job figures, 6-3 vote at the Bank
Posted by David Smith at 09:45 AM
Category: Thoughts and responses

A drop of 36,000 in the unemployment rate to 2.46m, and a drop in the unemployment rate from 7.8% to 7.7% in the January-March period was good news. Employment rose by 118,000 in the first three months of the year and by 416,000 over 12 months. It is only 332,000 below pre-recession levels. More details here.

The minutes of the May meeting of the Bank of England's monetary policy committee, also released, showed a 6-3 vote in favour of holding Bank rate at 0.5%, with one member, Adam Posen, again favouring a further 50 billion of quantitative easing. Expectations had been that one or more of the three hikers would change their vote after the first quarter GDP figures but they did not. For the MPC's hawk, Andrew Sentance, this was his last meeting. For the six in the majority, there will be a case for higher rates in time, but not yet. The minutes are here.