Carney wins approval of finance directors


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The Independent Online

Britain’s finance directors “like what they’ve seen” of Mark Carney in his first six months as Bank of England Governor, according to Deloitte’s top number-cruncher.

Many leading economists have criticised Mr Carney’s forward guidance policy – a pledge to keep interest rates at 0.5 per cent until unemployment falls to 7 per cent – while MPs have damned the concept as “a total failure of logic”.

But Deloitte chief economist, Ian Stewart, pointed out the results of the Big Four accountant’s latest survey, which showed 49 per cent of finance directors were more upbeat about the UK’s economic outlook since the Canadian became the country’s top central banker. Only 3 per cent said they were less optimistic, with the balance arguing that the Bank’s policies have had no effect.

Mr Stewart said: “If you’re Carney you would say that in contrast to the scepticism of some economists about forward guidance, the big allocators of capital in the economy like what they’ve seen since July.”

The poll of 122 finance directors showed that nearly 60 per cent of them are ready to take greater risks with their balance sheets, such as increasing borrowing for acquisitions.

For the first time since the onset of the global crisis, the finance bosses said that bank loans were the most attractive forms of finance for their businesses. Only 16 per cent believe that there is the probability of the UK falling back into recession.