THE GOOD OLD DAYS of world markets and the banking system being awash with cheap money are over. In the past two months, central banks across the globe have hiked interest rates as inflation roils their economies. The only central bank not to hike its interest rate (-0.1%) is the Bank of Japan, even as consumer inflation surged for the fifth straight month to 2.8%, over the bank's 2% target. The only country to have cut its interest rate despite inflation at 80% is Turkey, where the central bank lowered the rate by 1% to 12%, resulting in the Lira hitting a record low against the dollar. The aggressive rate hikes have kept stock markets on tenterhooks as fear of a recession hitting developed economies gains credence.

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