High food costs mean prices will remain higher for longer, the Bank of England warned, as it raised interest rates for the 12th time in a row.

Interest rates were hiked to 4.5% from 4.25% - the highest in almost 15 years - in the battle to slow inflation.

"It's taking longer for food price [falls] to come through," Bank boss Andrew Bailey told the BBC.

But Mr Bailey was more optimistic on how quickly the UK economy would grow, saying it would now avoid recession.

The Bank has been rapidly raising rates to try to slow the sharp rise in the cost of living.

UK inflation remains close to its highest level for 40 years, and is not dropping as quickly as predicted as prices in UK supermarkets remain high.

The Bank now expects overall inflation - the rate at which prices rise - to drop to 5% by the end of this year, above the 4% previously predicted.

The increase in interest rates will mean higher mortgage, credit card and loan payments for some people, but the rise in rates could benefit savers.

By raising rates, the Bank expects people to have less money to spend and buy fewer things, which should help stop prices rising as quickly.

However, it also makes it harder for firms to borrow money and expand.

Around 85% of all mortgages are fixed-rate, according to the Bank, and about 1.3 million households are expected to reach the end of their deals this year and face a hike of up to £200 per month, based on current rates.

FTSE 100

The UK's top share index, the FTSE 100, was up 28 points at 7,759 shortly after opening this morning, following yesterday's 10-point loss.

Brent crude futures were down just under 1% at $74.30 a barrel earlier this morning.

Companies reporting today

  • Beazley - Q1 trading statement

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