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News - 25 March 2009
Mervyn King. Governor of the Bank of England.

Government spending needs to be targeted now – Mervyn King

The governor of the Bank of England has cautioned against further wholesale government spending to stimulate the economy and suggests that any future largesse needs to be specific and focused.

In response to questions from MPs at a Treasury committee, the Governor accepted the need for economic stimulus leading to higher fiscal deficits but he questioned the wisdom of further increasing debt by spending more given the already heightened levels of UK debt resulting from a raft of recent stimulus packages. Instead he counselled "targeted and selected measures" in some areas of the economy.

His comments came as official figures showed a surprise rise in consumer price inflation (CPI) to 3.2% in February, from 3% in January, largely led by the rising cost of imported goods due to the weak £.

He said "Given how big those deficits are, I think it would be sensible to be cautious about going further in using discretionary measures to expand the size of those deficits. I think the fiscal position in the UK is not one where we could say, 'well, why don't we just engage in another significant round of fiscal expansion'."

Read related items on:
Bank of England
King, Mervyn

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