INterest rates to rise 25 points, page-2

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    Australia's RBA raises interest rates to 4.50 pct
    09:32, Wednesday, 8 May 2002

    SYDNEY, May 8 (Reuters) - Australia's central bank raised the
    official cash rate to 4.50 percent from 4.25 percent on Wednesday
    after Tuesday's monthly board meeting, heralding the start of a
    new tightening cycle.

    This was the Reserve Bank of Australia's first tightening
    since August 2000 and follows 200 basis points worth of easings
    during 2001, which took the cash rate to a near 30-year low.

    Economists had given a 70 percent risk of a rate rise this
    ((Colin Brinsden 61-2 9373-1800, Sydney Newsroom,

    [email protected]))

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