Egypt: Central Bank leaves interest rates unchanged in February
February 20, 2020
At its monetary policy meeting on 20 February, the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) left all interest rates unchanged for the second consecutive meeting. The overnight deposit rate therefore remained at 12.25%. The decision had been expected by market analysts and came after the Central Bank cut rates by 3.5 percentage points in the second half of 2019.
The CBE appeared to leave rates unchanged in February to monitor the effects of previous monetary policy easing. Inflation inched up to 7.2% in January from 7.1% in December, and remained well within the Central Bank’s Q4 CY 2020 target range of 6.0% to 12.0%. However, the Central Bank pointed to several downside risks to both inflation and economic growth in the coming months, including the coronavirus outbreak and lower oil prices, which suggests another interest rate cut is under consideration.
The CBE’s next monetary policy meeting is set for 2 April.
Author: Edward Gardner, Economist