BOE’s Bailey Says Coronavirus Means Bank Has to Be Nimble

BOE’s Bailey Says Coronavirus Means Bank Has to Be Nimble

(Bloomberg) —

The Bank of England needs to be nimble in its efforts to tackle the coronavirus threat, according to incoming Governor Andrew Bailey.

Speaking before U.K. lawmakers at his appointment hearing in Parliament on Wednesday, Bailey said collective action may be needed to offset the impact that the outbreak is having on supply chain damage.

The comments are the first time Bailey, who takes over from Mark Carney on March 16, has publicly addressed the policy outlook. They come amid mounting speculation from traders and economists that the BOE will follow the Federal Reserve in responding to the virus with an emergency interest-rate cut before its March 26 meeting.

Investors are currently pricing in around a 65% chance that officials will lower borrowing costs by 50 basis points this month, with some market watchers, including HSBC and Nomura, saying the move may come imminently.

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