Bank of England/TNS Inflation Attitudes Survey - February 2019

This quarterly survey, conducted by TNS on our behalf, assesses public attitudes to inflation, opinions about the Bank and awareness of our work.
Published on 08 April 2019

This news release describes the results of the Bank of England’s latest quarterly survey of public attitudes to inflation, undertaken between 8 and 9 February 2019.

Highlights from the survey

Question 1: Asked to give the current rate of inflation, respondents gave a median answer of 2.9%, compared to 3.1% in November.

Question 2a: Median expectations of the rate of inflation over the coming year were 3.2%, remaining the same as in November. 

Question 2b: Asked about expected inflation in the twelve months after that, respondents gave a median answer of 2.9%, up from 2.8% in November. 

Question 2c: Asked about expectations of inflation in the longer term, say in five years’ time, respondents gave a median answer of 3.4%, down from 3.5% in November. 

Question 3: By a margin of 56% to 6%, survey respondents believed that the economy would end up weaker rather than stronger if prices started to rise faster, compared with 53% to 9% in November. 

Question 4: 49% of respondents thought the inflation target was ‘about right’, remaining the same as in November, while the proportions saying the target was ‘too high’ or ‘too low’ were 22% and 13% respectively. 

Question 5: 7% of respondents thought that interest rates had fallen over the past 12 months, compared with 6% in November, while 34% of respondents said that interest rates had risen over the past 12 months, down from 44% in November. 

Question 6: When asked about the future path of interest rates, 22% said rates might stay about the same over the next twelve months, compared with 19% in November. 47% of respondents expected rates to rise over the next 12 months, down from 53% in November.

Question 7: Asked what would be ‘best for the economy’ – higher interest rates, lower rates or no change – 17% thought rates should ‘go up’, down from 19% in November. 17% of respondents thought that interest rates should ‘go down’, down from 19% in November. 37% thought interest rates should ‘stay where they are’, up from 34% in November.

Question 8: When asked what would be ‘best for you personally’, 22% of respondents said interest rates should ‘go up’, up from 21% in November. 28% of respondents said it would be better for them if interest rates were to ‘go down’, down from 31% 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 +26%, down from +30% in November.

ExcelSummary results

ExcelDetailed survey results