Get to know the Bank of England’s MPC

You watch them month after month as they decide on interest rates, but how well do you really know the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee? We’ve made it easy for you: read on for the key points you need to know about all the committee members and our Littlefish Market Mover ratings that will tell you who you need to watch out for…

Mark Carney

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 13.55.08Governor

What you need to know:
The BoE Governor was born in Canada and Harvard and Oxford educated. He kicked off his career at Goldman Sachs (didn’t all the central bankers?!) He was previously Governor of the Bank of Canada, and credited with shielding Canada from much of the financial crisis. Carney is the Clooney of the banking world: an all round good guy with an epic job on his hands.

Littlefish Market Mover Rating:
What he says matters, so pay attention. He is the boss after all. However, he’s unlikely to say anything out of context or without very clear justification. We’ve given him a Market Mover Rating of 10 – what he says is important, but he’s unlikely to cause major upsets or shocks. Though that could prove famous last words…

Ben Broadbent

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 13.55.36Deputy Governor, Monetary Policy

What you need to know:
The Deputy is also ex Goldman (see, we told you) and Cambridge and Harvard educated (again, it’s in the rules). As you’d expect, Broadbent frequently reiterates the Governor’s standpoint. During his time at Goldman, he was often perceived as Hawkish (which could be more down to Goldman than to Broadbent himself…) but more recently, he’s toed the party line.

Littlefish Market Mover Rating:
– What he says is important, but he’s unlikely to ever cause a shock unless the Governor said it first.

Nemat Shafik

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 13.56.04Deputy Governor, Markets and Banking

What you need to know:
Shafik is relatively new to the committee, having only joined in August 2014. She’s been tasked with unwinding the QE mess… and we don’t envy that role.  She previously held the role of Deputy Managing Director of the IMF and has an Oxford Doctorate in Economics as well as her MSc in Economics from the LSE. And she’s held in the highest regard by IMF Head Christine Lagarde.

Littlefish Market Mover Rating:
We’ve given her a rating of as her shock rating is as yet unproven. Her area of expertise and accountability make it crucial to listen to what she says: but so far, we haven’t seen a lot of her.

Sir Jon Cunliffe

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 13.56.40Deputy Governor, Financial Stability

What you need to know:
Sir Jon Cunliffe is a fellow Manchester grad like our own Littlefish Sam Barry, and also lectured in Canada. He never worked at Goldman – instead, he spent his time in the Government in roles including Head of the European and Global Issues Secretariat and British Permanent Representative to the EU, and sits on a couple of the G20 boards. He was appointed a Knight Bachelor in the New Year Honors 2010 (hence the Sir). Most recently, he’s been a big part of the face of the anti-banking excess culture in the UK.

Littlefish Market Mover Rating:
– As far as FX is concerned, Cunliffe is unlikely to cause any major waves beyond the Governor himself, but he’s a good one to watch for the banking sector in the UK.

Andy Haldane

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 13.57.09Chief Economist and Executive Director, Monetary Analysis

What you need to know:
Haldane is a Littlefish favourite: he’s usually pretty Dovish and often takes the Governor’s stance, but he can be nicely outspoken on the economy and has his own views. He was educated at Sheffield and Warwick before joining the BoE in 1989 and he’s widely regarded a leading expert on Financial Stability: so definitely one to listen to.

Littlefish Market Mover Rating:
Haldane is a bone fide market mover and one of Time Magazine’s world’s 100 most influential people. So he gets a well deserved 10 – and, moreover, he usually says some pretty interesting stuff.

Kristin Forbes

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 13.58.51Committee Member

What you need to know:
Forbes opted to study her Economics Doctorate at MIT (but she probably visited Cambridge or Oxford once or twice… they’re nice places, after all). She is a proper Quant, which we like, and as you might expect from an MIT grad. We’re expecting lots of logic sound reasoning from her, but as she was only recently appointed in July 2014, we’ve yet to see much of her outspoken side.

Littlefish Market Mover Rating:
We’ll give her a 3 for as long as we remain in troubled waters, but when the voting starts to get close, Kristin could be a critical one to watch for comments.

David Miles

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 14.00.02Committee Member

What you need to know:
Miles is a long-time MPC member (well, compared to the rest) having been appointed in 2009. He’s ex Morgan Stanley, and currently a professor at Imperial College London. More recently, he’s been seen defending the BoE’s rate guidance, and we reckon he has a strong case on this point: rate rises are extremely difficult to predict and you always need wiggle room, so why be explicit and cause more volatility? He’s often considered an “uber Dove”.

Littlefish Market Mover Rating:
4
– If we’re close to a split or Miles suggests rate rises when the committee is still majority against, he could prove a major market mover.

Ian McCafferty

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 14.00.58Committee Member

What you need to know:
McCafferty was educated at Durham and Amsterdam and is ex-CBI. He’s typically considered a Hawk (we’re not sure this is strictly true, but if Hawk = rate rises, then we guess he is, as he’s recently been voting for rate rises). McCafferty’s key argument at the moment is on an unbalanced economy.

Littlefish Market Mover Rating:
– McCafferty is a key one to watch as he’s typically happy to sit outside the consensus and be outspoken on it.

Martin Weale

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 14.01.44Executive Director, International Banks Supervision

What you need to know:
Weale is a Cambridge alum (so we’re back on track with the Oxbridge theme) and is a part time professor at the University of London. He was also made a Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in 1999 for services to economics. Again, he’s typically a Hawk, and has recently been voting for rate rises. Generally, he’s the biggest rebel on the MPC in going contrarian (he used the term rebel, not us) and his primary concern is Inflation.

Littlefish Market Mover Rating:
We’ll give him a 5 – he’s actually unlikely to move market despite being contrarian, as he’s very consistent in what he says. He may be the first person to move on rate hikes, but now we are split he’s unlikely to cause volatility until later rate hikes.

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