By Jonathan Davies

The US Federal Reserve should delay any decision to raise interest rates, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned.

The US has been widely tipped to be the first major economy to raise interest rates following an economic recovery. But the IMF said such a move would adds to economic and political threats against the US.

Many economists predicted that the Federal Reserve would raise interest rates in September, but a host of disappointing economic figures have raised doubts.

The IMF, which is based in Washington, also warned that US share prices were rising to unsustainable levels. It said that further gains would push the price of the dollar higher and could hurt growth.

The US dollar has already risen by 20% against several currencies over the past year, and the IMF warned that further increases in its value could mean economic growth is "significantly debilitated".