The Bank of England has kept interest rates on hold at 0.5% and said that it expects only a slight drag on inflation as a result of the renewed plunge in global oil prices and volatility in the stock markets. It also said that British economic growth around the turn of the year would probably be a bit slower than it previously forecast. Some analysts are pushing their expectations of the first UK interest rate rise from the end of 2016 into the start of 2017, but Governor Mark Carney is expected to give fresh guidance on the Bank's outlook for rates when he makes his first speech of the year on 19 January. Mr Carney had previously said that a decision on when to raise rates was likely to come into "sharper relief" around now.