Bank of Korea MPC(July 2017):Smooth sailing for now
As unanimously expected, the Bank of Korea kept its policy rate on hold at 1.25%.The key focus of Governor Lee's remarks was the quarterly forecast revision: theBoK upgraded its 2017GDP forecast to 2.8% (from 2.6%), which does notincorporate the impact of the (yet to be passed) supplementary budget. While themarket is pricing in a hike over the coming quarters, the BoK has not hinted at anyimminent policy action. Indeed, Governor Lee implied that the central bank wouldneed to see clearer signs of a recovery before adjusting policy. Given the BoK’sperennial concerns of floating-rate household debt, we do not believe thatmonetary tightening is on the cards. We forecast no change to BoK policy this year.
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