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[10 MAR 00] THE CHAMBER NEWS
Business Leaders Welcome Interest Rate News

Business leaders in Coventry and Warwickshire are mopping their brows following yesterday’s announcement that interest rates are not going to change.

Officials at the Chamber say firms in the area have been hit by four rate changes in the last six months.

And the decision by the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee to keep rates at six per cent has been greeted with relief.

Warwickshire area director Nick Madeley said:

"This is indeed a welcome decision for business throughout the UK, especially in Coventry and Warwickshire.

"Recent job losses have had a negative knock-on effect in Warwickshire due to recent interest rate rises, inflicting severe financial pressure on manufacturing and exporters in the area, so for rates to remain the same it is a boost.

"The current strength of the pound combined with intense competition is ensuring inflation for the moment is not on the way up, which can only be viewed as beneficial to industry."

But he added that the recent good news contrasts with the release of the figures showing that manufacturing output has dropped by 0.4 per cent.

The overall rise in output for the year is now just 1.8 per cent – well below the predicted 2.5 per cent.
   

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CWN / Business / The Chamber / 10 Mar 00

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