ECB set to hold 1% rate despite credit pain

FRANKFURT: The European Central Bank was set to leave its main interest rate steady at a record low point of 1.0 percent on Thursday, analysts said, despite tight credit and concern the eurozone could be hit by deflation.

A poll of 46 economists by Dow Jones Newswires found all expected the ECB to leave its benchmark lending rate unchanged as policymakers take a summer break.

"There seems little doubt that the ECB will keep its rates stable," ING chief eurozone economist Peter Vanden Houte said in a research note.

In London, the Bank of England was tipped to leave its main rate at 0.50 percent, with experts unsure if it would extend exceptional credit-easing plans.

Economic activity has shown signs of picking up in the 16-nation eurozone and surveys of businesses and consumers also suggest its first recession is finally winding down.