Bank of England policymakers left the door open for an extra cash injection into the faltering economy in February, judging that the time was not yet right for more easing, minutes to their Dec 7-8 policy meeting showed on Wednesday.
Data also showed Britain's budget deficit narrowed more than expected in November compared to a year earlier although weak growth and worries about the euro zone still threaten the government's attempts to balance the books.
Earlier a survey from researchers GfK NOP showed British consumer morale hit its lowest in almost three years in December as households became much more pessimistic on the outlook for the next 12 months.
Following are analysts' comments.
GEORGE BUCKLEY, DEUTSCHE BANK
The minutes show a 9-0 on both the decision on the rates and QE.
I think it is interesting that all members are discussing to make up for more QE.
If they do more QE in February they are more likely to do 75 billion pounds than 50 billion pounds to keep the weekly run data the same.
KIT JUCKES, CURRENCY STRATEGIST, SOCIETE GENERALE
They are doing QE about as much as they can, they do not need to do more yet and technically, doing more is quite tricky. When they make their next move, it will be more QE, but in reality you cannot do it at a rate that's disorderly. The MPC is temporarily out of bullets, it's standing by and watching.
ERIC WAND, RATE STRATEGIST, LLOYDS BANK
It's broadly as expected...the usual dovish view. We still think they'll do more QE once this round is over, looking for 400 billion in total, the economy probably warrants it and what's happening in Europe will act as a drag.
We see them remaining fully accommodative, certainly through the first half of next year.
CHRISTIAN SCHULZ, SENIOR ECONOMIST AT BERENBERG BANK
There was no change in the voting pattern. Last time some members (said) they were afraid the risks to inflation were more balanced, but this has expanded. It seems...there was a slightly less dovish note and more concern that inflation was not falling enough, which would mean the likelihood of QE is slightly lower than would've been.