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America’s annual inflation rate dipped to 6.4% in January, from 6.5% in December. Markets had expected a sharper fall. Food prices were up by 10.1% year on year, and energy prices by 8.7%, which all point to further interest-rate rises from the Federal Reserve. In Britain inflation stood at 10.1% in January, down from 10.5% but still stubbornly high. Inflation has not been falling as fast there as in America and the EU, though the Bank of England thinks this will change when lower wholesale energy prices start feeding through to consumers.

The Japanese government nominated Ueda Kazuo to be the next governor of the Bank of Japan. Speculation had swir...