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Interest rates held at 4.75 per cent

The Bank of England has decided to hold interest rates at 4.75 per cent for the second month in a row.

It follows the decision in August to raise the base rate by 0.25 per cent from the 4.5 per cent figure which had stood for a year.

Abbey chief economist Barry Naisbitt says: “It is widely expected that rates are likely to rise next month when the next inflation report is due. The economic news over the past month has seen a mix of data. For example, inflation returning to 2.5 per cent and the level of claimant count unemployment falling might suggest a bias towards raising rates.

“On the other side, the downward revision to second quarter GDP growth and the dip in oil prices might support holding rates.

“Given the information over the past month, there will be the usual speculation on whether any of the Monetary Policy Committee members voted to raise rates. I suspect that the decision to hold rates today may not have been unanimous but we’ll have to wait for the publication of the minutes to find out the details.”

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