(Adds more comments from BOK Governor Lee)
SEOUL Jan 13 South Korea's central bank kept
interest rates unchanged for a seventh straight month on Friday,
in line with expectations, as it braces for policy developments
out of the United States under the presidency of Donald Trump.
Following are key remarks from Bank of Korea Governor Lee
Ju-yeol's news conference, translated by Reuters:
"Its not right to automatically adjust benchmark interest rate
just to follow the number of (interest rate) increases (in the
"We revised down domestic growth outlook for this year by 0.3
percentage point to 2.5 percent, from 2.8 percent."
"Our foreign exchange reserves are not insufficient."
"The U.S. dollar is expected to broadly strengthen for a
while as the new administration is expected to announce
"We revised down (the growth forecast) and if we look at
major categories, there were big adjustments in private
"The downturn in consumer sentiment was reflected in our
outlook revision, and there is no change in stance that boosting
consumption is an important issue in economic policymaking."
"Given uncertainties are high at home and abroad, corporate
sentiment has been sluggish. If corporate sentiment continues to
be dampened for a prolonged period of time it will affect growth
through investment and jobs."
"I don't think the housing market is in a bubble."
"While (home price increases) are slowing compared with
better days before, I don't expect there to be some drastic
"We see inflation at 1.8 percent this year."
"Inflationary pressure to boost demand-side inflation isn't
(Reporting by Cynthia Kim and Christine Kim)