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Antara berita baik minggu ni, terutama untuk pelabur-pelabur tegar yg ada melabur dalam loan ASB.
Berita penuh berikut:
PETALING JAYA: Bank Negara has maintained the overnight policy rate (OPR) at 3% but raised statutory reserve requirement (SRR) from 3% to 4% as a measure to manage the significant build-up in liquidity.
In a statement yesterday, the central bank said domestically, latest indicators pointed to a moderation in growth in the second quarter due primarily to slower external demand, greater-than-expected disruptions in global manufacturing supply chain and lower-than-projected public sector investment.
“While the outlook for growth remains positive, there are heightened uncertainties arising from global developments that have created higher downside risks to growth,” it said in a statement yesterday.
The decision to raise the SRR, which refers to deposits that banks have to place with Bank Negara as reserves, was undertaken to manage the significant build-up of liquidity, which might result in financial imbalances and create risks to financial stability, the central bank said.
It said there were signs that domestic demand factors “could exert upward pressure” on prices in the second half of the year and that risks to inflation “are on the upside”.
Headline inflation increased 3.3% in May from a year ago due to higher fuel and food prices.
Supply factors continue to be the key determinant affecting consumer prices, with global commodity and energy prices projected to remain elevated, Bank Negara said.
The central bank’s decision to maintain the OPR, the benchmark rate which determines banks’ lending rates, was predicted by only one third of economists surveyed by Bloomberg.
However, AmResearch economist Manokaran Mottain, who earlier reckoned the central bank would maintain the OPR at 3%, said he expected monetary policy to remain accommodative until the year end.
“This is given the expected slowdown in global and domestic economic growth, coupled with easing inflationary pressures following the stabilisation of crude oil prices,” he said.
Bank Negara’s decision to raise SRR to 4% the level that persisted before the recent global financial crisis was a sign towards normalisation, Manokaran added.
Rating Agency Malaysia Bhd chief economist Dr Yeah Kim Leng said he expected the central bank to raise the OPR by another 25 basis points to 3.25% at its next meeting in September.
“For now, inflation here remains manageable, given that the roll-back in subsidies has not been completed,” Yeah said.
Bank Negara last raised its OPR by 25 basis points to 3% in May.