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UPDATE 1-Serbian central bank holds benchmark rate at 4 pct
April 11, 2017 / 10:22 AM / 5 months ago

UPDATE 1-Serbian central bank holds benchmark rate at 4 pct

(Adds bank statement, details)

BELGRADE, April 11 (Reuters) - Serbia’s central bank kept its benchmark interest rate unchanged at 4 percent on Tuesday for the ninth consecutive month, citing uncertain developments abroad as domestic inflation rises.

All 15 analysts and traders polled by Reuters this week and last said the central bank would keep the rate on hold.

Last month, the bank said that policies of key international central banks and their impact on emerging markets led it to keep the rate steady.

“Uncertainty in the global financial market that largely stems from divergent monetary policies ... may influence global capital flows to emerging markets and therefore to Serbia,” the bank said in a statement on Tuesday.

Serbia’s annual inflation rate rose in February to 3.2 percent from 2.4 percent in January. The Statistics Office is scheduled to announce March inflation data on April 12.

Protests against Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic appeared not to have a role in the bank’s decision.

Vucic won a landslide election victory, but thousands of protesters, mainly students, started rallying throughout the country against his rule, which they consider autocratic.

The dinar has lost 0.4 percent against the euro so far this year, prompting the central bank to sell more than 340 million euros to prop it up. (Reporting by Aleksandar Vasovic; Editing by Larry King and John Stonestreet)

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