BUENOS AIRES Jan 10 Argentina's central bank
kept its monetary policy rate unchanged at 24.75 percent for the
sixth week in a row on Tuesday, saying inflation was
decelerating in line with its expectations.
The monetary authority said it was likely to comply with its
goal of 1.5 percent average monthly inflation for the final
three months of 2016. Consumer prices rose 2.4 percent in
October and 1.6 percent in November, and the government was
expected to publish December figures on Wednesday.
Tuesday's announcement marked the second straight week in
which the central bank used the seven-day interbank lending rate
as its benchmark policy rate. In September, it said it would
stop tying the rate to short-term Lebac securities.
Consumer prices rose about 40 percent in 2016 with the
economy in recession. The central bank is targeting inflation of
between 12 and 17 percent in 2017, though economists see it at
above 20 percent.
The bank began targeting inflation last year after
unorthodox monetary policymakers under Argentina's previous
president, Cristina Fernandez, unsuccessfully relied on printing
pesos to keep the economy afloat during her two
(Reporting by Luc Cohen; Editing by David Gregorio)