Chavez calls for fixed interest rates

President Hugo Chavez said Sunday interest rates should be fixed to reverse Venezuela's deteriorating economic situation, just days after he imposed exchange controls and price controls for the same reason.

"I want interest rates to be lowered,'' Chavez said. ``I want the interest rates to be fixed ... and I call on the Central Bank of Venezuela to fix them."

Chavez suggested a maximum rate of 30 percent for commercial banks' lending rates, compared with well over 40 percent at present. This wo