Serbian town in the winter

Serbia Interest Rate

Serbia Interest Rate

Key Policy Rate in Serbia

The Key Policy Rate ended 2022 at 5.00%, up from the 1.00% end-2021 value and down from the reading of 9.50% a decade earlier. For reference, the average policy rate in Eastern Europe was 8.40% at the end of 2022. For more interest rate information, visit our dedicated page.

Serbia Interest Rate Chart

Note: This chart displays Policy Interest Rate (%) for Serbia from 2014 to 2023.
Source: National Bank of Serbia.

Serbia Interest Rate Data

2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Key Policy Rate (%, eop) 3.00 2.25 1.00 1.00 5.00
3-Month BELIBOR (%, eop) 3.03 1.64 0.90 0.94 4.95

NBS maintains rates in May

At its meeting on 10 May, the National Bank of Serbia (NBS) Executive Board decided to keep the key policy rate at 6.50%, with the rates on deposit and lending facilities also remaining unchanged at 5.25% and 7.75%, respectively. The move marked the tenth consecutive hold and was in line with market expectations.

The Central Bank's decision to maintain interest rates was primarily influenced by its medium-term projection for inflation and its expectations regarding the movement of key inflation factors ahead. The Bank highlighted that domestic inflation is slowing down at a faster-than-expected pace, curbed by past monetary tightening. That said, the NBS pointed to heightened volatility in global prices of energy and other primary commodities as risks to the inflation outlook, pushing the Bank to eschew rate cuts.

The communiqué did not provide specific forward guidance, stating instead that upcoming monetary policy decisions will depend on the pace of further inflation slowdown at home, while also considering the maintenance of financial stability and growth prospects. Our panelists expect the Central Bank to begin cutting rates in either June or July, with a total of 125 basis points of easing by the end of the year.

Mate Jelic, analyst at Erste Bank, commented on the outlook: “Looking ahead, ECB is largely expected to start easing in June. Assuming inflation remains steadily on a declining path, we expect the NBS will follow and start cutting in July. […] Overall, we forecast the NBS to ease by a total of 125bps by year-end, absent any new inflation shocks.” Raiffeisen Research’s Ljiljana Grubic said: “Although, as usual, NBS did not give clear guidance when the first-rate cuts could be expected, we give a 50% chance that the rate will be cut by 25bp at the June meeting supported by the inflation entering into the inflation target and robust GDP growth […] in Q1. However, we also see high risks that the rate cut could be delayed to July, following the first ECB rate cut and thus after analyzing the impact of the ECB decision on the FX lending in Serbia. In the end, the rate cut cycle is approaching, and it is only a question of a particular month when the decision will be delivered.”

Consensus Forecasts and Projections for the next ten years

How should you choose a forecaster if some are too optimistic while others are too pessimistic? FocusEconomics collects Serbian interest rate projections for the next ten years from a panel of 14 analysts at the leading national, regional and global forecast institutions. These projections are then validated by our in-house team of economists and data analysts and averaged to provide one Consensus Forecast you can rely on for each indicator. By averaging all forecasts, upside and downside forecasting errors tend to cancel each other out, leading to the most reliable interest rate forecast available for Serbian interest rate.

Download one of our sample reports to visualize what a Consensus Forecast is and see our Serbian interest rate projections.

Want to get access to the full dataset of Serbian interest rate forecasts? Send an email to info@focus-economics.com.

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