UK mourning postpones BoE rate decision

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The Bank of England has postponed next week's interest rate decision following the death of Queen Elizabeth, its first delay to a monetary policy meeting since the central bank became operationally independent 25 years ago.

Sterling fell half a cent against the US dollar as the BoE said it was rescheduling its next announcement on interest rates and other decisions until September 22 from an original date of September 15.

"In light of the period of national mourning now being observed in the United Kingdom, the September 2022 meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee has been postponed for a period of one week," the BoE said in a statement.

"The Committee's decision will be announced at 12 noon on 22 September."

Economists have said they mostly expect the BoE to raise interest rates by another 50 basis points although some in financial markets expect an even bigger hike of 75 basis points.

The BoE also pushed back its planned start of sales from its stock of corporate bonds, much of it accumulated during the COVID-19 pandemic, by a week to September 27.