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Aug. 4, 2022, 7:13 a.m. EDT

Bank of England delivers half-point rate hike as inflation pressures intensify

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By William Watts

The Bank of England, as expected, delivered its largest rate hike in more than 27 years on Thursday in an effort to rein in inflationary pressures that policy makers said have "intensified significantly" since the last meeting of the rate-setting Monetary Policy Committee. The committee voted 8-1 to lift Bank Rate by 50 basis points, or half a percentage point, to 1.75%. The BOE said one member preferred to raise the rate by 25 basis points to 1.5%. Rising inflation pressures reflect a near doubling in wholesale gas prices since May, the BOE said, "owing to Russia's restriction of gas supplies to Europe and the risk of further curbs." The latest rise in gas prices has led to another significant deterioration in the outlook for activity in the United Kingdom and the rest of Europe, the central bank said, with the U.K. "now projected to enter recession from the fourth quarter of this year."

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