Canada chops half a point off rates

The Bank of Canada has cut rates by 50 basis points to 3.5% amid fears of a more severe slowdown in the US.

The central bank said there were clear signs that the US economy was set to experience "a deeper and more prolonged slowdown than had been projected in January," which would have a "significant" spillover effect on Canada.

A further weakening in the housing sector was, the central bank said, spreading to other industries and tightening credit conditions.

Developments suggested that down