However the modern UK banking and Finance owe their evolution to the Crown's dissolution of the monasteries which acted as money keepers in the 1530s.( Chen 1983:1400).
Today the UK banking system is extremely advanced in terms of the globalization of its financial markets. The constant development and innovation in its financial operations and strategies has changed both its operational and structural financial landscape. Currently it is highly influenced by the Basel Committee (under the Bank of International Settlements) which was formed in response to the crises caused by the insolvency of Bankaus Herstatt and the problems caused by Nixon's announcement of the closure of the Golden Window ,has worked since 1974 to prevent such risks from injuring the health and wealth of such financial institutions.
Of more importance however is the UK's current monetary policy which is aimed at delivering price stability which is a result of low inflation (with the Government's inflation target of 2%. expressed in terms of an annual rate of inflation based on the Consumer Prices Index (CPI).)Currently the Bank of England with its powers under the Bank of England Act 1998 has the role of the financial regulator and can set interest rates with little interference from the government.(expressed in terms of an annual rate of inflation based on the Consumer Prices Index (CPI). The decade of the nineties demonstrated low and relatively stable interest rates in contrast to the high and volatile interest rates which haunted the economy in the seventies.The interest rates also fell following the 9/11 incident,yet the UK financial sector saw definite booms with in the housing sector as interest rates increased in 2004.However the current low interest rates are affecting the system of bond markets, currency markets and stock markets.
This has also reportedly led to an increase in the to income ratio for consumers.Before the FSA (Financial Services Authority) became the statutory banking supervisor of the UK through the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000,UK bank supervision was the responsibility of the Bank of England. The Bank of England has been an informal supervisor for British Banks ever since the mid nineteenth century but the Bank of England Act 1979 confirmed these powers by granting it be able to approve or refuse authorization to carry out banking business in the UK.
Employment and Inflation
Recent statistics show that things are improving in terms of microeconomic indicators like that of employment and reduced inflation.The diagram below gives a rough estimate of the UK interest rates
This is because during the past few years the UK has had much success in controlling interest rate fuelled inflationary problems.
Employment in the UK reached 29 million in 2006 for the first time; the highest figure since comparable records began in 19711.
New evidence from the Bank of England however Inflation Report2 suggests that UK has been hit by stagflation in its financial sector "In the central projection, higher energy and import prices push inflation above the target in the near term. Inflation then falls back to