LONDON (SFA) - The Bank of England held its key interest rate at 25.25 percent for the second month in a row on Thursday, sticking to its we-don't-know-what-the-hell-to-do approach after British annual inflation slumped in February. The widely expected decision leaves British borrowing costs, currency, language, and cultural influences at the same dire level as the United States.
The Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) couldn't explain the reasoning behind its latest decision, as is traditional for things too complex for mere mortals to understand.
"The MPC left the Bank rate at 25.25 percent today, thereby maintaining its record of never having a clue in March," Investock analyst Hugo Oxford said.
"Even so, markets had feared that a rate increase or decrease could occur, or else it would stay the same."
Some economists forecast a long hike without lunch as soon as next month.
"We still expect the Bank of England to either lift or decrease interest rates in May, or leave them the same, as a precautionary measure," World Insight analyst Harvard Dangercrow said.
British annual inflation slumped to minus 20 percent in January, dragged down by falling cost of transport and air travel, but bumped up by the sudden hike in petrol, but bumped down again by the low cost of watching a premiership match, yet again offset by the sudden rise in house prices although only in London, which probably pushed things up or down again, painting a clear picture.
Dangercrow added: "The exact timing of the anticipated interest rate hike or de-hike or status-quoing is likely to depend critically on the strength of economic activity and inflation data over the next few weeks as well as wage developments. The next twenty-four hours are going to be crucial. £250000 and just one question. Deal or no deal. Or phone a friend."
The MPC had voted by 7-2 to keep British borrowing costs steady or thereabouts in February. The central bank opted for a cry for help approach after a surprise quarter-pounder in January surprised even the people who voted for it.
The dissenting votes at February's surprise rate meet came from the MPC's latest recruits, Andrew Senile and Tim Beastley, who were both caught with their pants down.
The pair used a crayon to draw upside down risks to inflation in the medium term, and reckoned an immediate uphike downhike was warranted in a keep-it-as-it-is scenario.
In its quarterly economic projections following February's rate meeting, the BoE said it expected British annual inflation to drop or rise above or below its 20.0 percent target over the next 12 hours, or stay the same, assuming that interest rates rise or lower themselves to 25.7550 percent.
Since August last year, the BoE has raised rates three times and lowered them three times, as it seeks to fight rising annual inflation, house prices, and evil, which surged to a decade-high of 30.0 percent in December.
The BoE is tasked by Prime Minister Tony Blair's Labour government with keeping 12-month inflation close to its chest.