There will be no change to the Bank of England's policy settings this month amid hopes that the UK has avoided a technical recession in the first three months of the year.
The central bank held the base interest rate at its historic low of 0.5% and chose not to extend its £325bn quantitative easing programme.
The interest rate has remained unchanged since March 2009 while a £50bn emergency cash injection into the economy was last made in February.
The decisions come amid signs that the UK economy may have staged a modest recovery during the first quarter of this year.
Recent figures from the keenly-watched Markit/ CIPS purchasing managers index showed surprisingly strong growth in Britain's services sector, which accounts for almost three quarters of the UK economy, as well as an uplift in manufacturing and construction.
But the upbeat mood in the City was jolted today by figures showing a shock contraction in manufacturing activity in February.
Output fell by 1%, the biggest drop for ten months, according to the Office for National Statistics, calling into question the strength of any overall economic growth.
Official Gross Domestic Product (GDP) data for the first quarter of the year will be published later in the month.
The Bank of England's decisions met the expectations of the Sky News Money Panel.
Ross Walker, UK economist at Royal Bank of Scotland, said: "May's meeting - coinciding with the next quarterly Inflation Report - will be a closer call but, on balance, I think they will refrain from further QE until the second half of this year.
"Bank rate is likely to remain anchored at 0.5% for some time - certainly into next year."
Mr Walker was upbeat about the UK avoiding a recession, predicting GDP growth of 0.5% in the first quarter of 2012.
But he warned: "None of this should suggest that the UK economy is about to surge ahead.
"Significant medium-term headwinds persist - (necessary) fiscal tightening and household deleveraging - and the short-term data are likely to remain quite bumpy."
James Daley, editor of Which? Money, said it did not really matter whether the UK was in recession or not because it was clear the economy was struggling.
He said: "Neither result will be worth celebrating. We're in need of some new ideas and policy to get the economy moving."
The consumer expert also highlighted fears about the impact of last month's Budget on various social groups, describing it as a "mixed bag."
Sir Martin Sorrell, founder and chief executive of advertising group WPP, said he would "be brave" and predict the UK would not enter recession.
Anthony Thomson, the chairman of Metro Bank, was more cautious: "As I have said consistently, the economic recovery continues to be anaemic."
Louise George, the owner of Peter Popple's Popcorn, was also positive about the outlook for growth, but voiced fears that any strikes by fuel delivery drivers could impact her business.
She said: "At this stage it [the supply disruption caused by the recent panic buying] hasn't had a great effect on the wider economy, our business and consumers.
"However, if further disruption occurs and the strike goes ahead, this could impact our business with deliveries being unable to reach stores and many consumers unable to travel to buy our product."
:: London's leading shares index lost more than 2% yesterday after "a perfect storm of reasons to exit the market" spooked investors.
The FTSE 100 Index closed 134 points lower after investors were left disappointed by the decision by America's central bank not to provide additional emergency support to the world's biggest economy.
This was compounded by a survey showing a slowdown in the US service sector in March as well as a troubling debt auction in Spain, which once again raised the spectre of the eurozone debt crisis.