Compared to past performance, UK inflation has been low and unusually stable since the inception of inflation targeting, while GDP growth too has been remarkably stable. In part that reflects the effectiveness of the inflation-targeting framework and the current institutional arrangements, particularly by anchoring inflation expectations and reducing the sensitivity of inflation to demand and cost shocks.
But other factors have also provided a benign context for the MPC's efforts: cheaper imports and increased competitive pressures associated with globalisation; and increases in labour supply, associated in part with inward migration. Both have dampened inflationary pressures and reinforced the changes in the inflation process associated with the change in monetary regime. The environment is unlikely to be so benign in the future.
The submission also covers the impact on monetary policy of a number of particular issues that have been relevant to the MPC's deliberations over the past decade: the balance of demand and the exchange rate; money supply and liquidity; asset prices; household debt; and investment.