UK interest rates are to be held at 0.5%, the Bank of England has announced. No new quantitive easing will be undertaken either. It means interest rates have been at the current historic low for almost two years, with the last change in March 2009. With the full impact of heavy public sector job cuts yet to filter through to the economy and this month's increase in VAT set to dampen consumer spending further, the bank's rate committee has decided to hold the line despite concerns about rising inflation, especially food and fuel.