In 2006 the US central bank completed a series of interest rate rises that took its base rate from 1% to 5.25%. The plan was to cool a booming economy, but ended two years later with the great financial crash.

Earlier this month, the Federal Reserve was expected to push ahead with a 0.25 percentage point rise from its current range of 4.5% to 4.75%, this time to quell inflation generated by the Covid-19 pandemic and Ukraine war.

Last week that increase was thrown into doubt. And so was the Bank of England’s much-flagged interest rate rise, due on Thursday, that many in the City thought was a nailed-on certainty.

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