Carney hits back at critics of Brexit scenarios

Bank of England Governor Mark Carney has said the price of food could go up by 10% if Britain left the EU with no deal

Carney also appeared to warn the committee against Theresa May's Brexit deal, in particular the backstop, which would see the whole of the United Kingdom remain in the EU customs union for a limited period in order to avoid a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Bank of England Governor Mark Carney hit back at critics of the central bank's warnings of a potentially big Brexit hit to the economy, denying allegations of scare-mongering made by some lawmakers who oppose Prime Minister Theresa May's plans.

Mark Carney said today that the scenarios set out by the bank were based on detailed preparatory work to ensure banks and other lenders were ready for Brexit, and were not off-the-cuff forecasts. The main takeaway should be that the BOE found that United Kingdom banks could withstand any outcome, he said, adding there is a low probability of the worst-case Brexit scenario materializing.Responding to criticism of the publication, Carney said that's an "unfair" attack.

"There's no exam crisis".

Mr Carney told MPs on the Treasury Select Committee that increased tariff prices, import costs and a sharp fall in the value of the pound would send food prices soaring "quite quickly", while cars would also cost more after Brexit. "You asked for something that we had and we brought it and gave it to you", he said.

Former Bank of England Governor Mervyn King
Former Bank of England Governor Mervyn King

May's Brexit agreement with European Union leaders faces deep opposition in parliament, including from within her own Conservative Party, ahead of a key vote on December 11.

While the Bank of England would respect "any path" taken by parliament, the governor said: "From a financial stability perspective, it's highly undesirable to be a rule-taker and lose supervisory autonomy for any considerable length of time".

"It saddens me to see the Bank of England unnecessarily drawn into this project", King said in an article published on Bloomberg.

"We're already sleeping soundly at night, because we have the financial sector, the core of the financial sector, in a position that it needs to be for a tough scenario", he said.

However, despite banks, economists and business leaders issuing countless warnings, Carney said the central bank's stress tests found Britain's financial sector to be resilient and capable of handling Brexit-induced economic shocks.

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