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Russia Hints at Easing as Ruble Rally Helps Tame Inflation

  • Key rate kept on hold at 7.75%, in line with forecast
  • Policy makers lower year-end inflation forecast to 5%-5.5%
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The Bank of Russia said it may return to easing monetary policy this year after a currency rally and weak consumer demand helped blunt a spike in inflation.

The regulator kept its key rate on hold at 7.75 percent for a second straight meeting, according to a statement on Friday. That matched all 40 forecasts in a Bloomberg survey. Policy makers also lowered their year-end inflation forecast to 4.7 percent-5.2 percent from an earlier estimate of 5 percent-5.5 percent.