Quanititative easing by the Bank of England 2009-2020

One of the major duties the Bank of England (BoE) is tasked with is keeping inflation rates low and stable. The usual tactic for keeping inflation rates down, and therefore the price of goods and services stable by the Bank of England is through lowering the Bank Rate. Such a measure was used in 2008 during the global recession when the BoE lowered the bank base rate from 5 percent to 0.5 percent. Due to the economic fears surrounding the Covid-19 virus, as of the 19th of March 2020, the bank base rate was set to its lowest ever standing. The issue with lowering interest rates is that there is an end limit as to how low they can go.

Quantitative easing is a measure that central banks can use to inject money into the economy to hopefully boost spending and investment. Quantitative easing is the creation of digital money in order to purchase government bonds. By purchasing large amounts of government bonds, the interest rates on those bonds lower. This in turn means that the interest rates offered on loans for the purchasing of mortgages or business loans lowers, encouraging spending and stimulating the economy.

Value of quantitative easing measures by the Bank of England (BoE) in the United Kingdom from November 2009 to March 2020

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Source

Release date

March 2020

Region

United Kingdom

Survey time period

November 2009 to March 2020

Supplementary notes

The source added the following "Quantitative easing is a tool that central banks, like us, can use to inject money directly into the economy. Money is either physical, like banknotes, or digital, like the money in your bank account. Quantitative easing involves us creating digital money. We then use it to buy things like government debt in the form of bonds. You may also hear it called ‘QE’ or ‘asset purchase’ – these are the same thing. The aim of QE is simple: by creating this ‘new’ money, we aim to boost spending and investment in the economy."

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