National Newswatch

The Bank of Canada has hiked its key interest rate to 0.5 per cent, the first step of a series of signalled increases amid economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The overnight rate target will rise 25 basis points, the central bank announced Wednesday, up from the floor of 0.25 per cent it held for much of the pandemic.

In a statement accompanying the decision, the Bank of Canada said the war in Ukraine is “a major new source of uncertainty” that is driving prices higher on oil and other commodities.

“This will add to inflation around the world, and negative impacts on

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