Philippine central bank may consider pausing rate rises if inflation slows By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A logo of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (Central Bank of the Philippines) is seen at their main building in Manila, Philippines March 23, 2016. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco/File Photo

MANILA (Reuters) – The Philippine central bank may consider pausing its monetary tightening next month if April inflation does not accelerate, the bank’s governor said on Sunday.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Felipe Medalla said in a telephone message to Reuters that a pause in interest rate increases was possible “if the April CPI (consumer price index) is not higher than the March CPI”.

Medalla said a “zero or negative month-on-month inflation” may also support the case for a rate hike pause.

Philippine headline inflation eased for a second consecutive month in March to 7.6% from 8.6% in February but it remained above the central bank’s 2%-4% target for the year.

To tackle inflation, the BSP has raised its benchmark interest rate by 425 basis points since May last year to 6.25%. Medalla has said future policy moves would be data-dependent. It next meets on May 18 to review policy.

by : Reuters

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