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MOSCOW, Sept 7 (Reuters) - The Russian central bank will consider cutting its key rate to as low as 8.5 percent next week, the bank’s senior officials said on Thursday.
Bloomberg TV quoted the bank’s governor, Elvira Nabiullina, as saying that the board of directors will decide between cutting the rate by 25 or 50 basis points.
This statement matches the market view that the central bank would trim its key interest rate for the fourth time this year at its next rate-setting meeting on Sept. 15 after keeping it on hold at 9 percent at the last meeting in late July.
“It is most likely that a cut in a range between 25 and 50 basis points will be considered at the September meeting,” Igor Dmitriev, the head of monetary policy department at the central bank, said in an interview with Interfax news agency published on Thursday.
At the following few board meetings, the central bank would consider either holding the rate or trimming it by up to 50 basis points, Dmitriev said.
A slowdown in once stubbornly high annual inflation to 3.3 percent in August poses no threat for the central bank’s ultimate inflation target of 4 percent, Dmitriev said, according to Interfax.
Dmitriev also said that the central bank plans to upgrade 2017 economic growth forecast to 2.0-2.1 percent from the current range between 1.3 and 1.8 percent, Interfax reported. (Reporting Andrey Ostroukh; Editing by Ralph Boulton)