September 27, 2017 / 11:17 AM / a year ago

UPDATE 1-Norway economy well placed to handle stronger crown -central bank chief

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KRISTIANSAND, Norway, Sept 27 (Reuters) - The Norwegian economy is well placed to cope with a moderate strengthening of the country’s crown currency, central bank Governor Oeystein Olsen told Reuters on the sidelines of a meeting with business leaders on Wednesday.

On a trade-weighted basis, the currency index is expected to strengthen from a current level around 103.5 to an average 102.4 in 2018 and 100.5 in 2019, Norges Bank said on Sept. 21.

“The Norwegian economy, in our forecasts, can well tolerate the crown strengthening that we anticipate,” Olsen told Reuters.

“There is of course some uncertainty in the interactions we base our forecasts on, but the outlook indicates a somewhat stronger crown ahead is expected to coincide with a pick-up in economic growth and a further drop in unemployment,” he said.

Statistics Norway’s Labour Force Survey on Wednesday showed unemployment falling to 4.2 percent for the June-August period, in line with most analyst forecasts, from 4.3 percent in May-July.

“That’s as expected, there was no surprise there,” Olsen said. (Reporting by Camilla Knudsen, writing by Terje Solsvik, editing by Gwladys Fouche)

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