Pound Jumps On Rate Outlook

18/02/11 -- The pound is up above 1.62 against the dollar and close to 1.1950 against the euro this morning as pundits bet on rising inflation forcing the Bank of England's hand on interest rates sooner rather than later.

High profile (I was going to say shameless self-publicist, but that would be unkind) MPC member Andrew Sentance made comments at a dinner last night that suggested that other committee members were coming round to his way of thinking.

The minutes of this months MPC meeting are out next Wednesday and they will be "more interesting than normal," he apparently said. (He may have been misquoted of course and could have said "more interesting than Norman" - referring to former bushy-eyebrowed Chancellor and boring old fart Norman Lamont).

A report in the Telegraph recently quoted two former MPC members as saying that they would have voted for a rate increase themselves last week if they were still on the committee. It seems that last week's unchanged vote may have been more of a split decision than previous ones.

You can follow the pound tick by tick on the stunningly excellent Grainportal.com, which is where the chart pictured comes from.