UK central bank holds rates as it assesses Brexit delay

May 02, 2019 - 6:13 am

LONDON (AP) — The Bank of England kept its main interest rate on hold at 0.75% on Thursday as it assesses what impact the delay to Brexit might have on the economy.

The central bank's Monetary Policy Committee voted unanimously to keep the main rate on hold. Governor Mark Carney will hold a news conference later where the focus will be on his views of the effect of the Brexit extension, which has removed the immediate threat of a crash out of the EU without a trade deal but also prolongs uncertainty.

Minutes to the central bank's meeting released Thursday showed some concern about the level of uncertainty.

"The economic outlook will continue to depend significantly on the nature and timing of EU withdrawal, in particular," the rate-setters said.

Britain was due to leave the EU on March 29 but Parliament twice rejected Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit deal, pushing back the Brexit date to Oct. 31.

The central bank has consistently warned about the economic impact of Brexit uncertainty and of a deep recession if Britain were to leave the EU without a deal.

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