Interest Rate

Interest Rate

About Interest Rate

An interest rate is the rate at which interest is paid by a borrower for the use of money that they borrow from a lender. For example, a small company borrows capital from a bank to buy new assets for their business, and in return the lender receives interest at a predetermined interest rate for deferring the use of funds and instead lending it to the borrower. Interest rates are normally expressed as a percentage of the principal for a period of one year. Interest rates targets are also a vital tool of monetary policy and are taken into account when dealing with variables like investment, inflation, and unemployment. In the past two centuries, interest rates have been variously set either by national governments or central banks. For example, the Federal Reserve federal funds rate in the United States has varied between about 0.25% to 19% from 1954 to 2008, while the Bank of England base rate varied between 0.

Contributions by Kuru, Bluemoose, and Gary King.