Base rate freeze is no surprise

The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee has voted to keep interest rates on hold at 4.5%. The decision comes after last month’s cut of a quarter point , the first in two years.

Duncan Pownall, mortgage development manager for Bradford & Bingley, says: “This is no surprise. Given the jump in the inflation rate, rising oil prices and signs of improvement in the retail picture, the MPC is unlikely to have considered any other course of action.”