Saturday, January 17, 2009

OK…I Guess These Are Unprecedented Times

This evening, I was reading through the Corrections and Amplifications insert in today’s Wall Street Journal, when something just JUMPED off the page at me. Now the point could be made that if I’m reading corrections and amplifications, that I must be really bored. Since there was no football on TV at the time, I would have to agree with you on that point, but take a look at the graph in the link below that comes from that section of the paper.

Bank of England Rate Chart

What stunned me was the fact that the Bank of England recently cut its target interest rate to 1.5%, which is the lowest it’s been in its 315 years. Yes, that’s right, in its 315 year history, the interest rate has never been lower than we're seeing now. The rate is lower than when slavery was abolished in Great Britain, lower than during the Crimean War or lower yet than during the South Sea bubble…whatever that was. So, when one of your kids asks if you ever have seen economic times like this before, you can be safe in saying that none of us have ever lived through anything similar to this.

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