The Yorkshire and Humber Shadow Monetary Policy Committee voted unanimously for a hold in interest rates and no further quantitative easing, mirroring the decision taken by the Bank of England today.
The Yorkshire and Humber Shadow MPC is a partnership initiative, between The Yorkshire Post and Yorkshire law firm Lupton Fawcett Denison Till.
Members from across the region’s business community felt the new Government needed time to bed in before any shift in interest rates was implemented by the Bank of England.
David Bagley, director at Finance Yorkshire, said: “I think, short term, it will give more stability. We have one party and things will settle. Already, we have seen the pound strengthen on the markets, so the markets obviously like it.”
However, he added: “We have got the potential of a referendum on Europe in 2017 looming, and that will weaken the pound in the long term.”
Paul Stephens, from UKTI, said: “I do wonder whether having a majority now they will be forced to cut and those cuts will impact badly on the economy and therefore that would start to impact on the pound and all the rest in a different way.”
Andrew MacHutchon, of the Federation of Small Businesses, said: “We have got to get exports onto the market and the current situation is that the manufacturing industry is not showing any growth at all.
“House building may take off. Until we can get some growth into the market we are not going to see much inflation.”
Discussing the Government’s ambition to create a “northern powerhouse”, members felt lessons should be learned from the cohesion across in Manchester.
Andrew Marran, of Leeds Beckett, said: “We need to get better at that as a region and function better together. The innovation’s there. It’s probably more innovative than what’s going on over the Pennines, but innovation isn’t enough.”
Mark Overfield, of Grant Thornton, said: “If you look at Leeds, compared with Sheffield, Wakefield and Hull, all these different areas, we view them day to day as being quite different, so I can understand why they don’t buy into the overall vision, but when it comes to how we join all these pieces together I can understand the challenge. It must just need someone to say ‘this is how it’s going to be’.”