Tuesday, February 14, 2012

National Bank of Kazakhstan Cut Rate 50bps to 7.00%

The National Bank of Kazakhstan cut its key refinancing rate by 50 basis points to 7.00% from 7.50% as inflationary pressures eased.  NBK Chairman, Grigori Marchenko, said: "If the level of inflation is the same, I think we could lower the refinancing rate again in April."  Kazakhstan's central bank last increased the interest rate in March last year by 50 basis points to 7.50%.

Kazakhstan reported inflation of 5.9% in January, 7.4% in December, 8.7% in September, compared to 9.0% in August, and 8.50% in July, and above the official inflation target of 8 percent.  Kazakhstan's economy grew at an annual pace of 7.2% in 3Q11, up from 7% in the June quarter, and 6.8% in the March quarter.  

Kazakhstan recently returned its currency, the Tenge, to a "managed" free float, abolishing the tenge's trading corridor at the end of February last year.  The Kazakhstani Tenge (KZT) last traded around 148 against the US dollar.


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