* Minutes show members see need for vigilance on inflation
* All policymakers see upside risk to inflation in short
MEXICO CITY Dec 14 A warning by Mexico's
central bank that it might raise interest rates if inflation
pressures heighten again reflects only a majority view on the
five-member board, minutes of policymakers' discussion showed on
All five members of the Banco de Mexico's monetary policy
board agreed that the bank needed to remain vigilant on
inflation, after deciding unanimously to keep interest rates
steady at 4.5 percent at their meeting two weeks ago.
"The majority stressed that despite the recent decline in
inflation, the board must be careful to avoid risks of
contamination of prices and, if the downward trend does not
continue, it would be prudent to adjust the monetary stance to
ensure this convergence," the minutes said.
The division backs traders' and analysts' view that the
central bank is unlikely to raise interest rates until mid-2014,
also given increasing concern about risks to growth.
"There's really no reason to keep this neutral to hawkish
tone, that line 'if inflation picks up, we will hike', that has
less punch for me," said Benito Berber, an economist at Nomura
in New York.
Inflation in Latin America's no. 2 economy has been easing
since it touched a 2-1/2 year high of 4.77 percent in September,
after an outbreak of avian flu and bad weather pushed up the
price of eggs, chickens, and crops earlier this year.