Bank of Thailand holds rates at 1.5%

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The Bank of Thailand has opted to hold interest rates at 1.5 per cent as forecast by analysts.

The BoT’s policy committee voted unanimously to keep rates at their current level, where they have been since the last cut in March 2015.

Thailand’s gross domestic product grew 3.2 per cent year on year in the third quarter slightly behind a median forecast of 3.4 per cent. GDP figures for the fourth quarter are set to be released on February 20th.

Capital Economics Asia economist Krystal Tan expects the BoT to hold rates at 1.5 per cent throughout 2017.

Looking ahead, the BoT will want to keep monetary policy accommodative to support the economy. The latest data suggest the economy ended 2016 on a softer note. The central bank’s private consumption and investment indicators both weakened in Q4, while a recent crackdown on cheap tour packages has hurt the tourism sector.

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