Identity plan for voters trialled
THE BANK of England has signalled that it is a step closer to raising interest rates after one of its most dovish policymakers said he may back a hike “as early as in the coming months”.
Gertjan Vlieghe, an external voting member of the Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee, said he has been “struck” by a series of developments in the UK economy, including high inflation, employment growth, slight wage increases and stronger spending growth in the third quarter.
He also pointed to the wider economic backdrop of “improving global growth” over the past year, including across the eurozone.
“Until recently, I thought the appropriate response of monetary policy was to be patient, given modest growth and subdued underlying inflationary pressure. But the evolution of the data is increasingly suggesting that we are approaching the moment when Bank rate may need to rise,” Mr Vlieghe said.
Voters in five areas of England are to be required to show ID for the first time in an election next year, it has been announced.
If successful, the trial could be extended across the country as part of a drive to counter voting fraud.
The Electoral Commission watchdog recommended in 2014 that voters should be required to prove their identities before casting a ballot.