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Marcus Ashworth

The Bank of England Is Playing With Fire

The BOE’s unemployment forecasts and bad loan assessments look strangely out of step with those of Britain’s biggest lending banks.

A fragile recovery. 

A fragile recovery. 

Photographer: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images Europe

The Bank of England risks being in a category of one. On Thursday, in its quarterly monetary policy report, it presented a surprisingly chipper assessment of how it expects the U.K. to recover from the pandemic lockdown.

Its relative optimism was in jarring contrast to the gloom that’s engulfed Britain’s big lending banks. BOE Governor Andrew Bailey has had a decent crisis up until now, but he’ll dent his credibility if he’s seen as being too much of a cheerleader.