Bank of England backs another 50 billion pounds stimulus, leaves key rate at 0.5 per cent

LONDON – The Bank of England has backed another 50 billion pounds ($78 billion) injection into the ailing British economy.

Thursday’s move by the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee was widely-anticipated and raises the amount it is pumping into the British economy since March 2009 to 375 billion pounds. It is the first stimulus since February.

Under the so-called quantitative easing program, the Bank purchases government bonds from banks, in the hope that they will use the money to lend to businesses and consumers. The new purchases are expected to take 4 months to complete.

Britain is officially in recession, defined as two consecutive quarters of negative growth.