TNS interviewed a quota sample of people aged 16 and over in 368 randomly selected output areas or group of output areas (sample points) throughout the United Kingdom; 4243 people between 10 and 19 February 2017. The raw data were weighted to match the demographic profile of the UK as a whole.
Highlights from the survey
- Question 1: Asked to give the current rate of inflation, respondents gave a median answer of 2.7%, compared to 2.3% in November.
- Question 2a: Median expectations of the rate of inflation over the coming year were 2.9%, compared with 2.8% in November.
- Question 2b: Asked about expected inflation in the twelve months after that, respondents gave a median answer of 2.7%, compared with 2.5% in November.
- Question 2c: Asked about expectations of inflation in the longer term, say in five years’ time, respondents gave a median answer of 3.2%, compared to 3.1% in November.
- Question 3: By a margin of 46% to 9%, survey respondents believed that the economy would end up weaker rather than stronger if prices started to rise faster, compared with 50% to 10% in November.
- Question 4: 55% of respondents thought the inflation target was ‘about right’, up from 53% in November, while the proportions saying the target was ‘too high’ or ‘too low’ were 18% and 11% respectively.
- Question 5: 22% of respondents thought that interest rates had fallen over the past 12 months, compared with 29% in November, while 21% of respondents said that interest rates had risen over the past 12 months, compared with 20% in November.
- Question 6: When asked about the future path of interest rates, 28% said rates might stay about the same over the next twelve months, unchanged since November. 42% of respondents expected rates to rise over the next 12 months, up from 41% in November.
- Question 7: Asked what would be ‘best for the economy’ – higher interest rates, lower rates or no change – 21% thought rates should ‘go up’, unchanged since November. 12% of respondents thought that interest rates should ‘go down’, compared to 16% in November. 37% thought interest rates should ‘stay where they are’, up from 36% in November.
- Question 8: When asked what would be ‘best for you personally’, 23% of respondents said interest rates should ‘go up’, compared with 24% in November. 23% of respondents said it would be better for them if interest rates were to ‘go down’, down from 25% in November.
- Question 14: Respondents were asked to assess the way the Bank of England is ‘doing its job to set interest rates to control inflation’. The net satisfaction balance – the proportion satisfied minus the proportion dissatisfied – was +30%, down from +31% in November.