The Monetary Policy Committee, led by Governor Mervyn King, left the Bank Rate at 5.75 percent, the highest since April 2001, the central bank said in London on August 2. The decision was predicted by all 60 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News.
The nine policy makers said at July's meeting, when they voted for an increase, that they planned to wait for new inflation and growth forecasts this month before deciding whether further moves are needed. Inflation has held above the bank's 2 percent target for a 14th month, while stock prices have tumbled as the U.S. subprime crisis spread to markets in Europe and Asia.
``The bank is going to want to give previous increases a chance to have an effect,'' said Dominic White, an economist at ABN Amro Holding NV in London who used to work at the U.K. Treasury. ``The likelihood is that the economy will hold up and that inflation may be more of a problem. Rates will probably go to 6 percent.''