The outcome of “Super Thursday” — the day the Bank of England releases a bumper set of data on the U.K. economy and its outlook — has money managers more convinced than ever that a rate rise will take place in February.
Also Thursday, the Monetary Policy Committee voted 8-1 to keep interest rates unchanged.
GDP forecasts were up to 2.8% for 2015, from 2.5% previously; and 2016 estimates remained unchanged at 2.6%.
Inflation forecasts, however, were revised down for the near term to account for the effects of the drop in oil prices, to 0.3% for 2015, down from previous estimates of 0.6%. For 2016, inflation is now expected to come in at 1.6%, vs. 1.5% previously.
Executives at AXA Investment Managers and J.P. Morgan Asset Management forecast a start to tightening in February. David Page, senior economist at AXA Investment Managers said in a statement: “We think the first hike debate will shift to (first half) 2016, from 2015/2016.”