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Bank Indonesia keeps benchmark rate at 5.75 pct, as expected
March 7, 2013 / 6:57 AM / 5 years ago

Bank Indonesia keeps benchmark rate at 5.75 pct, as expected

JAKARTA, March 7 (Reuters) - Indonesia's central bank left
its benchmark rate at a record low 5.75 percent on Thursday, as
expected, despite a surge in headline inflation in February and
pressure on the rupiah from the country's trade and current
account deficits.
    The policy rate has been kept at 5.75 percent since
February 2012, when it was cut by 25 basis points.
    A Reuters poll of 13 analysts had expected the benchmark
policy rate to be unchanged, partly because annual core
inflation - which excludes volatile food and administered prices
- softened last month to 4.29 percent.
    February's annual headline inflation rate was surprisingly
high, at a 20-month high of 5.31 percent, compared with 4.57
percent in January. 
    In 2012, Indonesia suffered its first-ever annual trade
deficit and a large current account deficit. That contributed to
the rupiah being the worst performer among emerging Asian
currencies, weakening about 6 percent against the dollar last
year.
    
    KEY DATA: 
    Announcement date        Rate (percent) 
    --------------------------------------- 
    07-Mar-2013              5.75
    12-Feb-2013              5.75
    10-Jan-2013              5.75
    11-Dec-2012              5.75
    08-Nov-2012              5.75
    11-Oct-2012              5.75
    13-Sept-2012             5.75
    09-Aug-2012              5.75 
    12-July-2012             5.75 
    12-June-2012             5.75 
    10-May-2012              5.75 
    12-April-2012            5.75 
    08-March-2012            5.75 
    09-Feb-2012              5.75 
    12-Jan-2012              6.00 
    08-Dec-2011              6.00 
    10-Nov-2011              6.00 
    11-Oct-2011              6.50 
    08-Sept-2011             6.75 
    09-Aug-2011              6.75 
    12-July-2011             6.75 
    09-June-2011             6.75 
    12-May-2011              6.75 
    12-April-2011            6.75 
    04-March-2011            6.75 
    04-Feb-2011              6.75 
    05-Jan-2011              6.50
    
    CONTEXT
    - Some of the analysts polled by Reuters expect Bank
Indonesia to increase the overnight deposit facility rate, known
as Fasbi, by 25-50 basis points this year. BI increased that
rate by 25 basis points last August.
    - Indonesia's February annual inflation jumped to 5.31
percent due to an increase in prices of imported foodstuffs
after the government imposed some import limitations and because
of a hike in electricity tariffs for certain households in
January.
    - The trade deficit in January narrowed to $170 million from
a revised $190 million for December, as exports improved in
tandem with recovering global demand. 
    - A recent data release showed a slight improvement in
manufacturing activity. The purchasing managers' index (PMI)
rose in February, but export orders fell due to weak demand from
Europe and America. 

 (Reporting by Rieka Rahadiana and Fathiya Dahrul; Editing by
Richard Borsuk and Neil Chatterjee)

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