Brazil cuts its key interest rate to 9% from 9.75%, its sixth straight reduction and near an all-time low, citing low risk of inflationary spike

BRASILIA, Brazil , April 19, 2012 () – Brazil's central bank has cut its key interest rate to a near record low, saying the risks of an inflationary spike are "limited." It was the sixth consecutive rate reduction.

The nation's benchmark Selic rate is now at 9 percent. That's down from last month's 9.75 percent.

The reduction announced Wednesday night comes at a time when the government has asked banks to lower interest rates to stimulate the economy, which is feeling the effects of the global financial crisis. So far, three private banks and two state-run banks have lowered their interest rates

The new rate is the lowest since the July 2009 to June 2010 period when it was 8.75 percent.

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