September 13, 2018 / 11:42 PM / 10 days ago

S.Korea central bank deputy governor defends policy, says can't just target home prices

SEOUL, Sept 14 (Reuters) - A senior South Korean central bank official defended its monetary policy on Friday, saying interest rate decisions could not just target stabilising housing prices. Senior Deputy Governor Yoon Myun-shik was responding to reporters’ questions on whether low interest rates had caused Korea’s home-buying frenzy.

“Stabilising home prices is an important factor in macroeconomic terms for the purposes of financial stability. But monetary policy cannot solely target stabilising home prices,” Yoon said.

When asked if politicians’ comments affected the central bank’s decision-making Yoon stressed that policy decisions should be made neutrally and independently.

South Korea laid out plans on Thursday to impose tougher taxes on property ownership to rein in some owners of expensive homes blamed for stoking a speculative housing bubble in prominent areas across the country. (Reporting by Seung-gyu Lim, Hayoung Choi, Cynthia Kim Editing by Eric Meijer)

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