IMF chief says UK might need to rethink austerity now

WASHINGTON Fri Apr 19, 2013 2:09pm EDT

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde speaks to Stephen Sackur during the taping of the BBC's HARDtalk show at the IMF Headquarters 2 in Washington, April 19, 2013. REUTERS/Larry Downing

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde speaks to Stephen Sackur during the taping of the BBC's HARDtalk show at the IMF Headquarters 2 in Washington, April 19, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Larry Downing

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The head of the International Monetary Fund said on Friday it might now be time for Britain to consider relaxing its focus on austerity.

Christine Lagarde was asked in an interview with BBC television whether the British government should show more flexibility in its approach to fixing the country's economy.

"We are saying with this medium-term, strong anchoring of fiscal consolidation, the pace has to be adjusted depending on the circumstances and given the weak growth that we have observed lately ... now might be the time to consider," she said.

(Writing by William Schomberg)

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