December 15, 2016 / 9:14 AM / in 7 months

Norway's central bank keeps rates on hold as expected

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OSLO, Dec 15 (Reuters) - Norway's central bank left its key interest rate unchanged on Thursday, in line with forecasts, and said it expected it to remain close to 0.5 percent in the coming years.

"The key policy rate forecast implies a slightly higher probability of a decrease than an increase in the key policy rate in the year ahead," it said.

All but one of the 16 economists polled by Reuters had said earlier the bank would keep its deposit rate unchanged at the current record low 0.50 percent. (Reporting by Stine Jacobsen, editing by Terje Solsvik)

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