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The Central Bank of England left interest rates unchanged at a level of 0.5%, according to the analysts' preliminary attitudes.

Markets will be assessing United Kingdom industrial production, manufacturing production, construction output and the UK's trade balance, with markets expecting a slight drop in the UK's trade deficit from -£2804 to -£2400.

He said: "Assuming there is no major economic shock, the MPC has judged that monetary policy needs to be tightened somewhat earlier, and somewhat more, than anticipated in November". There is now apparently a 75% chance of hike in interest rates in May and a raise in rate by August has already been factored in.

Months of healthy reports about the state of the USA and European economies led to significant and sustained growth on global stock markets, but last week they began to fall sharply. Also, the meeting came at a time when there are uncertainties in the United Kingdom, crude oil are rising, and the inflation rate is above the target.

Policymakers continue to expect strong economic growth, with GDP forecasts for 2018 and 2019 clocking in at around 3.25% annually. Prices had been rising sharply due to the pound's sharp fall after the June 2016 vote for Brexit. This language was similar to that of their September meeting which came a month before the first hike. The forecast for inflation is to remain above the target of 2%, namely 2,11% over a three-year period.

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He suggested investors had overlooked that this can lift inflation and rates.

"The fact that Brexit negotiations entail significant uncertainty does not mean that forecasting is impossible and it's useful to step back to assess how the economy has performed relative to the MPC's expectations in order to understand the broader forces at work".

Before the meeting, traders were waiting for the language of the statement. I am not convinced however, the uncertainty surrounding phase two of Brexit talks does not bode well for the United Kingdom economy.

On the economy, he said that the committee expected the United Kingdom economy to continue growing, with the unemployment rate slowing, and wages rising.

The pound rose more than half a cent against the dollar after the Bank of England hinted that a further rate rise might come sooner than expected.

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The EIA also forecast that US output will average 10.6 million bpd this year, enough to continue surpassing Saudi Arabian output. The political mayhem involving the royals of Saudi Arabia in November of a year ago led to a steep rally in crude-oil prices.

It later gave up much of those gains and was at $1.3942 at 1635 GMT as a broader sell-off in markets in late European trading hit sterling.

Some economists have said that the Bank of England has a narrow window to raise rates because later in the year, London and Brussels could be wrangling over their long-term relationship, weighing on the economy and possibly preventing the bank from moving.

The comments were a sign that the bank was turning its sights to tackling price growth over two years rather than three.

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He also maintained that the hike will be gradual and that the committee will use forward guidance to warn investors beforehand.

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