BoE Governor Andrew Bailey said the central bank is “ready to act, should that be needed”. However, he added that while negative rates are “part of out tool box”, at the moment, “we do not have a plan to use them.

A “conclusion we tend to be drawing from other experiences is that the negative rates and their effectiveness depends on what point in the cycle you use them,” he explained. “If you see what the ECB have done in their analysis that probably they are more effective in an established upswing than they are in a difficult downswing.”

On the economic outlook, he emphasized “forecasts can sometimes look beguilingly straightforward”. But “there’s an awful lot of risk in there ad it’s obviously distributed one way.”

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