That’s how low the base interest rate now is in the UK after Bank of England announced the half-point reduction. This is the lowest in the Bank’s 315-year history. The good news is that many mortgage providers have promised to pass is on. Is this good or bad news? Well the hope is of course that it will contribute to getting the wheels going again but commentators say that this isn’t enough.

A bit of good news for Scotland at least is the announcement from the Royal Bank of Scotland to make an additional £250m of funding available to small and medium sized companies in Scotland. £250m is not a lot in the wider scheme of things but to many SMEs a windfall may come very handy in these icy times.

Ohh, and did you see the brilliant argument by BBC’s Robert Peston in his blog for why bankers should not receive a bonus? Check it out for yourself.

And finally for something pretty amazing you should check out the annual snow festival in Sapporo, Japan. The ice sculptures are impressive.