Fears that the Bank of England's next move in interest rates is more likely to be up than down coloured much of the comment on yesterday's widely expected decision to leave rates unchanged at 4.5 per cent for a ninth month.
The respected National Institute of Economic and Social Research called last week for rates to go up.
Since then, evidence of an unexpectedly strong manufacturing recovery and a persistently buoyant housing market have come at a time when record metal prices have added to the underlying inflationary pressure from the cost of energy.
The Bank will give its latest assessment of prospects in its quarterly Inflation Report next Wednesday.
Yesterday Ian McCafferty, chief economic adviser at the CBI, was among those still holding out for a cut.
"While we are not surprised at the Monetary Policy Committee's decision, we are slightly disappointed," he said.
"We believe that inflationary pressures remain under control and, notwithstanding recent news, the economic outlook is still sufficiently fragile to permit a small cut in rates."
But he acknowledged that with the departure from the committee of dove Stephen Nickell "this may remain a minority view for some time".
The EEF urged the Bank to resist calls for a pre-emptive increase in the cost of borrowing while Britain's economic growth has been at or slightly below the long-term trend for two years and inflation remains close to the Bank's two per cent target.
"With growth showing no signs of moving above trend and inflation subdued, it is far too early to start talking of increases in rates," said Steve Radley, chief economist at the EEF.
"The Bank must continue to keep its finger off the trigger until there is a stronger case for a move in either direction."
Roger Bootle, economic adviser to Deloitte, insisted that "talk of higher interest rates may be a bit premature".
He added: "Admittedly, if the strength of the housing market prompts a pick-up in consumer activity, interest rate rises may come on to the agenda before the year is out.
"But for the moment, I think the prospect of a significant undershoot of the two per cent target later this year suggests that the next move in rates is still more likely to be down than up."
David Waller, Midlands chairman of accountants PricewaterhouseCoopers, said: "April has been another tough month for the region's manufacturing base with the Peugeot announcement and businesses continue to operate in a tough trading environment.
"While we don't anticipate a reduction in the immediate term, the fact remains that it is still a top priority for the region. The speculation about a potential increase in the base rate is, at the very least, surprising."
In Frankfurt, the European Central bank also left its key eurozone interest rate unchanged at 2.5 per cent, after raising it in December and March.
But some analysts still expect another rise in June.