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Banks

Brazil central bank holds benchmark rate at 14.25 pct

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Brazil’s central bank left interest rates unchanged on Wednesday, in a unanimous first decision by a new board exercising caution in the face of political uncertainty and high inflation expectations.

Ilan Goldfajn President of the Central Bank of Brazil reacts during a meeting of the monetary policy committee of the Brazil's Central Bank in Brasilia, Brazil, July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Adriano Machado

COMMENTARY:

LUCIANO ROSTAGNO, CHIEF STRATEGIST, BANCO MIZUHO

“The format changed completely but the message remains the same: the conditions for easing rates are not there and it does not seem they will be there in the very short term.”

“There was no indication of any need to prepare the market for a reduction in interest rates. This discussion has not even been touched on yet, according to the statement. So we cannot expect that the conditions for easing will be there in August because they will not emerge from one day to the next.”

ZEINA LATIF, CHIEF ECONOMIST, XP INVESTIMENTOS

“This decision changes the format of the statement which I found praiseworthy. It’s a transparent statement, allowing one to better understand the reasons behind the decision.

“I did not find the statement hawkish. It does not throw the prospect of easing too far forward. I thought it was the right decision for this assessment of the risks. There are advances and there are short term risks and that is there.

“I would say it does not close the door (to a rate reduction in August). The current situation does not permit easing now but there is no indication of what to expect in 45 days’ time.”

“The big highlight is the fact that the inflation projection has come down, which is recognition of an improved environment.”

Reporting by Brasilia news bureaus; Editing by Daniel Flynn

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