Bank of England keeps interest rates steady

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LONDON (AP) — The Bank of England has voted to keep its key interest rate at a record low of 0.5 percent as weak inflation keeps the pressure off policymakers to start raising borrowing costs.

Policymakers voted 8-1 to keep rates steady at their January policy meeting, particularly since inflation remains at 0.1 percent, well below the official 2 percent target.

The drop in oil prices has sparked worry, even though Britain's growth is among the strongest of developed countries. Crude prices have fallen to near $30 a barrel, suggesting little inflation in the short term and harder times for the country's energy sector.

Though the Federal Reserve raised rates last month, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney has insisted a decision to raise rates in America is "not decisive" for U.K. policymakers.

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