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Interest rates held at 0.5%

Interest rates have been held at 0.5% as the Bank of England announced it will inject a further £50bn in to the economy.

The decision came as the Bank of England said that it saw signs that the UK’s financial market strains “have eased” and that business and household confidence has “picked up”.

The Bank of England will now have pumped a total of £175bn in to the economy.

In a statement the Bank of England said: “The world economy remains in recession, though there have been increasing signs that output in the UK’s main export markets is stabilising.

“Financial market strains have eased and banks’ funding conditions have improved a little, although financial conditions remain fragile.

“Household and business confidence has picked up, albeit from the very low levels experienced in the wake of the financial crisis last autumn.

It added that the recession in the UK “appears to have been deeper than previously thought” but that “the pace of contraction has moderated”.

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