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Economic Affairs Committee to hear evidence on Quantitative Easing

Monday 1 February 2021

On Tuesday 2 February 2021 the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee will hold its first evidence sessions of its new inquiry into Quantitative Easing (QE).

These evidence sessions will be held remotely and streamed on Parliament TV.

At 3.15pm the Committee will hear from:

  • Chris Giles, Economics Editor, Financial Times
  • Professor Daniela Gabor, Professor of Economics and Macro-Finance, University of the West of England Bristol
  • Philip Aldrick, Economics Editor, The Times.

Questions the committee is likely to ask include:

  • Has the expansion of QE during the COVID-19 pandemic undermined the Bank of England’s independence?
  • Has the Bank of England been sufficiently transparent in its decision-making process during each phase of the QE programme?
  • What has the primary purpose of QE been during the pandemic?
  • Is QE still an effective monetary policy tool, or has it reached its limits?
  • What are the main risks from continuing to expand QE?#
  • Will QE be unwound in full, or is it likely that the Bank of England’s balance sheet will be permanently, and structurally, larger going forwards?

At 4.15pm the Committee will hear from:

  • Sir Paul Tucker, Research Fellow, Harvard Kennedy School and former Deputy Governor of the Bank of England.

Questions the committee is likely to ask include:

  • How should Parliament, and the public, expect the Bank to communicate its decision-making process for QE?
  • Has QE undermined the Bank’s independence, either by perception or operation?
    • What have the main distributional effects of the QE programme been?
  • Why have you said in the past the QE has “run its course”?
  • You have said that the Bank should revert to the role for which it was given independence in 1997 – “to act as a check on fiscal excess”. Does this mean an end to QE?
  • Should the Bank of England’s mandate be altered in any way, and what would the options be?

More on this inquiry

The committee is examining Quantitative Easing in the context of the Bank of England’s operational independence, its accountability and the transparency of its decision-making. It is also considering the economic effects of Quantitative Easing, what risks are entailed, its distributional impacts and the future of the programme.

On Wednesday 27 January 2021 the committee published a call for evidence inviting written submissions to this inquiry. The deadline for submissions is 26 February 2021.

More on the Economic Affairs Committee

The Economic Affairs Committee is one of the five permanent investigative committees in the House of Lords and is charged with considering economic affairs.

Committee Website
Twitter - @LordsEconCom

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