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Too many Uncertainties to Discuss Policy Tightening, BOK

SEOUL, May 4 (Reuters) - Bank of Korea board members said the bank shouldn’t be in a rush to tighten monetary policy despite an expected pickup in the economy due to uncertainties over COVID-19, minutes of its April meeting released on Tuesday showed.

“Considering still huge uncertainties related to the coronavirus and vaccines, it seems too early to discuss the normalization of monetary policies,” a board member said at the board’s April 15 meeting.

The BOK on April 15 kept the seven-day repurchase rate unchanged at 0.5%, as expected, amid concerns that rising coronavirus cases could derail the economic recovery.

A majority of board members expected inflation to accelerate to around the 2% level, but at least two stressed that stronger inflationary pressures may not change the picture on the rate outlook as the job market remains weak. [nL1N2MQ2IB

The BOK sees the economy expanding at 3% to 4% this year after contracting by 1.0% in 2020.

Reporting by Cynthia Kim; editing by Richard Pullin

Source: Reuters

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