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Traders around the world are forging ahead with bets on negative interest rates, even as central banks mount a vocal counter-offensive.

Fed funds futures reflected bets for a negative U.S. policy rate for a fifth day, despite Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s attempts to challenge the prospect Wednesday with assurances that such a move is unlikely. While expectations for a shift moderated slightly after Powell’s speech, traders are still prepared for a move during the first half of next year.

Global investors are factoring in a long, difficult road for policymakers trying to get their virus-damaged economies back on track. U.K. traders became the latest to price in sub-zero rates this week, in what would be the first move below zero in British history. Investors in New Zealand also see the benchmark falling through zero—something policymakers in Wellington have openly contemplated—and, in the United States, negative-rate expectations have stayed in place since May 7.

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