Bank of England Leaves Benchmark Rate at 0.5%

The Bank of England left its benchmark interest rate unchanged at 0.5% and maintained the size of its asset purchase program.

The bank, which sets monetary policy for the United Kingdom, hasn't changed its benchmark rate since March 2009. It has maintained its asset purchase program at £200 billion ($303 billion) since November.

"I don't think rates will rise for a long time," Grant Lewis, an economist at Daiwa Capital Europe Ltd. and a former U.K. Treasury official, told Bloomberg News before the announcement before the announcement.

The bank buys "high-quality private sector assets" financed by the issue of Treasury bills.
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