Commenting on the news that the MPC voted by five votes to four to keep the interest rate at 5.50 per cent David Kern, economic adviser to the British Chambers of Commerce, said:“The news that the MPC has voted with the slimmest of margins to keep rates on hold in June is alarming for British business.   It means that an increase to 5.75 per cent in July is now very likely.  Even more worrying, it also suggests that interest rates could increase to 6 per cent within the next few months.  The threat of monetary overkill, which would cause long term damage to the economy, is now very serious.  We urge the MPC to act very cautiously.”