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Published:Wednesday | July 16, 2014 | 12:00 AM

 Blaze destroys section of popular Haiti market

A fire has engulfed a portion of a popular market in Haiti's capital where vendors mostly sold charcoal and wood for construction.

Nadia Lochard, an official from Haiti's Civil Protection Department, said there is "significant" damage to sections of Port-au-Prince's sprawling Croix de Boussales market. There were no reports of any deaths or injuries.

Lochard says the fire early Tuesday completely destroyed a collection of stalls where vendors sold wood and charcoal.

Investigators were trying to figure out the exact cause of the blaze.

UK pound near 6-year high after inflation spike

The British pound spiked near a six-year high against the US dollar on Tuesday after a surprisingly big increase in UK inflation fuelled expectations that the Bank of England may start raising interest rates soon, possibly by the end of the year.

Figures on Tuesday from the Office for National Statistics showed consumer prices rose by an annual rate of 1.9 per cent in June, just below the Bank's ostensible target of 2.0 per cent.

Inflation, which rose from May's 4.5-year low of 1.5 per cent, is now at its highest level since January.

The consensus in the markets was for a far more modest increase of 1.6 per cent rise.

The forecast-busting figures gave the British pound a further boost to US$1.7192 at one stage, its highest level since October 2008 when the global financial crisis was in full swing. It then settled back to trade 0.4 per cent higher on the day at US$1.7151.