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Malaysia seen to hold key rate as economy resilient so far: poll

Monday, September 5, 2016 - 12:42

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Malaysia's central bank will likely hold its benchmark rate at 3.00 per cent on Wednesday, a Reuters poll showed, as the economy looks to have held up amid volatile global markets.

[KUALA LUMPUR] Malaysia's central bank will likely hold its benchmark rate at 3.00 per cent on Wednesday, a Reuters poll showed, as the economy looks to have held up amid volatile global markets.

Eleven out of 12 economists in the poll forecast no change in Bank Negara Malaysia's (BNM) key rate. In their view, solid exports and domestic consumption indicate that the South-east Asian country has been resilient, so far.

One economist predicted a cut of 25 basis points, to follow the surprise trim of that size at the July policy meeting - the first rate reduction since 2009.

"With the economic environment having softened so obviously, we think BNM must continue to respond with monetary easing," Lim Su Sian of HSBC said in a research note published on Monday.

Malaysia's annual growth slipped to 4.0 per cent in the second quarter, extending a trend of slowing growth to five straight quarters.

REUTERS

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