LONDON, Oct 17 (Reuters) - The Bank of England could 'conceivably' raise rates in 2014, at least two years earlier than its August forecasts implied, the central bank's chief economist Spencer Dale said in an interview published on Thursday.
Asked by the Guardian newspaper whether the Bank could raise rates as early as next year, Dale replied: 'Conceivably it could be 2014. But it would have to be in a world where you had quite strong growth, perhaps stronger than you have got now, and a recovery in productivity weaker than I would expect.'
In August the central bank committed to keep interest rates on hold until unemployment falls to 7 percent - something it forecast would take at least three years - unless inflation threatens to get out of control.
Dale indicated that the rate rise was more likely to come sooner than that, rather than later, though not within months.
'The big message is that monetary policy is going to remain loose for a considerable period of time. I can't be sure whether that means it will be tightened in 2015 or 2016. It could be 2015. It could be a bit earlier than that or a bit later,' he said.
* For the full interview, see: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2013/oct/16/bank-of-england-interest-rates-may-rise-next-year
(Reporting by David Milliken, editing by Stephen Addison) Keywords: BRITAIN BOE/DALE
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