October 19, 2018 / 8:23 AM / a month ago

POLL-Indonesia c.bank seen keeping key rate unchanged on Tuesday

* reuters://realtime/verb=Open/url=cpurl://apps.cp./Apps/cb-polls?RIC=IDCBRR%3DECI Poll data

* 13 of 15 economists see BI keeping rates at 5.75 pct

* Oct decision won’t imply tightening cycle is over - economist

* Decision due on Tuesday, Oct 23, around 0700 GMT

JAKARTA, Oct 19 (Reuters) - Indonesia’s central bank is expected to hold its key interest rate on Tuesday, a Reuters poll showed, as the rupiah has been stable in the past two weeks, but some analysts said the central bank’s tightening cycle has not ended.

In the poll, 13 out of 15 economists said Bank Indonesia (BI) will hold its 7-day reverse repurchase rate at 5.75 percent.

The other two predicted a 25 basis points (bps) hike to 6.00 percent.

Aldian Taloputra, an economist at Standard Chartered in Jakarta, said the central bank to keep the rate unchanged “because the rupiah has been more stabilised and (economic) figures in September were relatively good.”

Bank Indonesia (BI) has hiked its benchmark by 150 basis points (bps) since mid-May - include a 25 bps hike on Sept. 27 - to help prop up the fragile rupiah.

The currency has been trading at or close to its weakest since 1998 amid emerging market volatility due to rising U.S. Treasury yields and escalating trade tension between the United States and China.

ANZ economist Sanjay Mathur expects a hold on Tuesday but said that would not imply that the tightening cycle has concluded.

“Rather, the course of monetary policy in Indonesia will increasingly be dictated by that in the US,” he said in a note on Friday.

In the poll, all five economists who gave a view on the key rate at the end of 2018 said it will be higher than now by 25 or 50 bps.

Earlier this month, BI Governor Perry Warjiyo signaled a possible rate hike ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve to avoid “drastic” capital outflows. In December, the Fed is expected to increase U.S. rates for the fourth time this year. (Polling by Nilufar Rizki and Tabita Diela in JAKARTA, Khushboo Mittal in BENGALURU; Writing by Fransiska Nangoy; Editing by Richard Borsuk)

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