The Bank of England has cut its 2015 growth forecast from 2.9% to 2.5%, and for next year from 2.9% to 2.6%, as governor Mark Carney unveiled his quarterly inflation report.
And it backed expectations interest rates may rise in about a year’s time.
Mr Carney also said deflation could emerge during the year, but that inflation was expected to pick up notably towards the end of the year.
Inflation was 0% in March for a second month, well below the Bank’s 2% target.
The figure marks the lowest rate of Consumer Prices Index inflation since estimates of the measure began in 1988.
The Bank’s base rate has been at a record low of 0.5% for more than six years.
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