Page last updated at 10:47 GMT, Monday, 8 June 2009 11:47 UK

Bank planning trade credit help

Exterior of the Bank of England
The Bank of England has cut rates six times since October

The Bank of England is proposing to widen the programmes that come under its quantitative easing policy.

The Bank currently buys government debt as part of a policy to stimulate the economy by adding £125bn of new cash.

It is proposing to extend its Asset Purchase Facility to high quality assets backed by trade receivables that provide working capital to businesses.

This should help improve "liquidity in credit markets that are not functioning normally", the Bank said.

The Bank last week left interest rates at a historic low of 0.5% for the third month in a row.

The central bank plans are designed to extend its current facility to purchase secured commercial paper, providing cash directly to businesses that need it and cannot borrow in the capital markets.

A second programme, the Supply Chain Finance Facility, would also provide working capital to companies. The Bank hopes to launch the facilities soon.

The Bank is to complete its planned spend on quantitative easing in July. The Treasury has said it can spend up to £150bn.

Under the programme, the UK central bank prints money and uses it to buy government and corporate bonds to increase money supply and stimulate the economy.

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