The UK's free market economy is the only way to boost living standards, says Prime Minister Theresa May

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Theresa May began her career at the Bank of England (Source: Getty)

Prime Minister Theresa May will today stress the importance of the UK’s free market economy, calling it the “greatest agent of collective human progress ever created”.

In a speech to mark the 20th anniversary of the independence of the Bank of England (BoE), May will say a free market operating under the right rules and regulations “led societies out of darkness and stagnation”.

She added that a free market economy "is unquestionably the best, and indeed the only sustainable, means of increasing the living standards of everyone in a country".

May, who started her professional life at the Bank of England in 1977, will say: “We should never forget that raising the living standards, and protecting the jobs, of ordinary working people is the central aim of all economic policy.”

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The Prime Minister will also vow to take a “balanced approach” to public spending to ensure the UK economy “can remain strong and we can protect people’s jobs”.

Meanwhile, BoE chief economist Andy Haldane last night dropped a further hint that an interest rate rise was imminent.

In an attempt to sooth the nerves of debt-laden consumers, he told Sky News: “This would be interest rates getting back to normal. It would be a sign of the economy healing."

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