Bank Indonesia Raises Borrowing Costs

The Bank Indonesia increased the interest rates today for its third meeting in a row to efficiently fight the accelerating inflation caused by the growing food and oil prices.
The central bank voted for the interest rate to be raised from 8.5 percent to 8.75 percent. The only reason the government wants to hold the rates that high, despite the unpopularity of such measures, is the fastest price growth in Indonesia in the last 21months.
Although the rate of the Indonesian rupiah remains quite steady against the U.S. dollar since April this year, the USD/IDR rate may experience some decline, as this interest rate hike may cause more investors to secure their assets in the Indonesian currencies and get a higher yield.
The rate increase wasn’t a surprise for the market analysts — the growing fuels costs cause protests by the transportation workers world-wide and Indonesia isn’t the exception. Despite the fact that the high borrowing costs may hurt the position of the current President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on the general elections next year, the inflation remains the central bank’s main priority.

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