Russia: Central Bank maintains rates unchanged
August 10, 2012
At its policy meeting on 10 August, the Central Bank left the refinancing rate unchanged at 8.00%, in a move that was largely expected by market analysts. In addition, the Central Bank left both the overnight deposit rate unchanged at 4.00% and the overnight repurchase rate at 5.25%. Inflation continued to increase in August, although it remained within the Bank's 5.0%-6.0% target range. According to the Central Bank, uncertainty regarding the development of Russian and global food prices and, in particular, regarding the impact of this summer's drought on Russian harvests, remains a potential source of inflationary risk. Analysts believe that the Central Bank is ready to act soon, as monetary authorities eliminated the reference to the appropriateness of the current monetary policy stance "in the near term" in its monetary policy statement. The phrasing suggests the possibility of a rate hike if inflation risks materialize in the coming months.
Author: Armando Ciccarelli, Head of Data Solutions