MPC voting pattern to get closer

An industry expert says that the Monetary Policy Committee will face a period of close votes after a third member voted for a rate rise in February.

Minutes from the MPC meeting show Spencer Dale joined Martin Weale in voting for a rise of 0.25%, while rate rebel Andrew Sentance opted for a 0.5% rise. Adam Posen was the only member to vote for an increase in quantitative easing from £200m to £250m.

Industry consultant Mehrdad Yousefi says: “The mood of the MPC has changed and it’s inevitable we are going to see closer votes in the coming months, if not a rate rise.

“There are two opposing views from those who want to bring down inflation and those who want to wait to ensure a recovery.”

But Melanie Bien, director at Private Finance, says: “Most of the members want to see an indication that the economy is on track before any rises, so I think it will be late summer before any change.”