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Bank of England operational independence: Former Treasury Permanent Secretary to give evidence

Monday 26 June 2023

At 3pm on Tuesday 27 June the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee will be taking evidence from:

  • Lord Macpherson of Earl's Court, former Permanent Secretary to the Treasury
  • Sir John Parker, former Chair of the Court of Directors, Bank of England.

This evidence session, which is open to the public, will be held in Committee Room 3 of the House of Lords. It will also be streamed live on Parliament TV.

Topics the committee is likely to cover in this session include:

  • Whether the Bank’s price stability objective is suitably defined.
  • Successes and failings since 1998 of an operationally independent Bank of England.
  • Whether the Bank, and central banks in general, have fallen victim to groupthink and/or poor models.
  • The effectiveness of the Bank and Treasury’s relationship from the perspective of monetary and fiscal policy coordination.
  • Whether the mechanisms to hold the Bank to account, and to scrutinise its operations, are working efficiently.
  • What role, if any, the Bank’s Governor should play in the formulation of the Chancellor’s annual remit letters.
  • Whether quantitative easing and the size of the Bank’s balance sheet has compromised its independence and credibility in the fight against inflation.

More about this inquiry

2023 marks the 25th anniversary of the Bank of England Act 1998. This Act gave the Bank of England its independence and reformed the structure, responsibilities and functions of the Bank.

The Economic Affairs Committee has launched an inquiry to examine how operational independence is working. It will focus on the Bank’s role and remit; whether the governance structures of the Bank are appropriate; and how the Bank is being held accountable for its actions.

It will not look at individual policy decisions that the Bank has taken.

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