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Financial News: Iceland Central Bank Lowers Rate By 25 Bps

Iceland Central Bank Lowers Rate By 25 Bps

11/06/2019 - 07:22:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Iceland central bank lowered its benchmark interest rate for the fifth successive rate-setting session as the economy is forecast to contract this year.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Iceland, on Wednesday, reduced the interest rate by 25 basis points to a record low 3.00 percent.

"The Bank's interest rates have been cut by 1.5 percentage points since the spring, and the impact of this has yet to come fully to the fore," the bank said in a statement.

The bank observed that lower interest rates have supported demand, and the current interest rate level should suffice to ensure medium-term price stability and full capacity utilization.

Moreover, the forthcoming fiscal easing will pull in the same direction, the bank noted.

Policymakers said the near-term monetary policy decisions will depend on the interaction between developments in economic activity, on the one hand, and inflation and inflation expectations, on the other.

Although the economic growth exceeded the forecast in the first half, the bank expects a 0.2 percent contraction for the whole year. For 2020, GDP was forecast to grow 1.6 percent.

Inflation was forecast to subside faster than expected in August and align with the target towards the end of 2019. Moreover, inflation expectations continued to fall.

In October, inflation eased to a one-year low of 2.8 percent from 3 percent in September.

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