Jon Cunliffe: It's time to talk about money

Speech by Sir Jon Cunliffe, Deputy Governor for Financial Stability of the Bank of England, at the London School of Economics, London, 28 February 2020.

Central bank speech  | 
04 March 2020


One of the questions that I find hardest to answer simply is "what does the Bank of England do?"

I get asked this penetrating question a lot, especially by children when I visit schools as part of the Bank's outreach and education programme - which incidentally is one of the most rewarding parts of my job.

There is a long, comprehensive and accurate answer of course, describing our monetary policy and financial stability objectives, policies and actions and our role in demand management. When I talk to economics classes in schools, I can often feel their teachers willing me to come out with these textbook answers.

But I find that the better and simpler answer is that we are responsible for ensuring that the money of the United Kingdom 'works'. Money, like electricity and water, is crucial to the operation of a modern society. Our job is to ensure it works safely and reliably, through ups and downs, so that everyone in society can depend upon it.

That means ensuring its value can be depended upon - monetary stability.