Commenting on the choices facing the MPC at its November meeting next week, David Kern, Economic Adviser to the BBC, said:

 “World economic gloom is worsening. There are serious fears that the US is facing a major downturn next year, with damaging consequences for the rest of the global economy, including the UK.

“Against this worrying background, a small UK interest rate cut in December would help to sustain business and consumer confidence, and ensure we are not talking ourselves into an unnecessary recession.   

”Inflation remains a risk. But given the mounting threats to growth, we urge the MPC to take pre-emptive action next week to help unfreeze the credit markets. Waiting until early 2008 before cutting UK interest rates would entail unacceptable dangers to the economy.”