The Swiss National Bank (SNB) maintained its expansionary monetary policy stance and said it remains “cautiously optimistic” about the outlook for the Swiss economy while the global economy is expected to continue to improve, with industrial activity and trade picking up.
The SNB left its benchmark target range for 3-month Libor rates at minus 1.25 – 0.25 percent along with a negative 0.75 percent rate on sight deposits at the central bank.
The rates have remained on hold since the SNB stunned foreign exchange markets in January 2015 by scrapping an upper limit on the exchange rate of the Swiss franc against the euro.
After the 1.20 cap on the franc against the euro was scrapped, the franc immediately soared but since then it has remained relatively steady. Today the franc was trading at 1.069 to the euro, up 0.4 percent since the start of this year.
The SNB confirmed that it still considers the franc to be “significantly overvalued” and will remain active in the foreign exchange markets when needed.
“The negative interest rate and the SNB’s willingness to intervene in the foreign exchange market are intended to make Swiss franc investments less attractive, thereby easing pressure on the currency,” the SBN said.
Updating its forecasts, the SNB raised its outlook for inflation in coming quarters due to higher oil prices but in the longer term inflation is expected to be slightly lower than forecast in December.
For 2017 the SNB now expects inflation to average 0.3 percent, up from 0.1 percent previously forecast, while inflation in 2018 is seen at 0.4 percent, down from 0.5 percent.
For 2019 inflation is seen at 1.1 percent with the forecast assuming an unchanged 3-month Libor rate of minus 0.75 percent.
In February Switzerland’s headline inflation rate rose to 0.6 percent from 0.3 percent in January for the highest rate since June 2011 and the third consecutive month of zero or positive inflation.
Although economic growth in the fourth quarter was lower than expected, the SNB said data still point to continued moderate recovery with growth of roughly 1.5 percent for this year.
In the fourth quarter of last year Switzerland’s Gross Domestic Product grew by only 0.1 percent from the third quarter for annual growth of 0.6 percent, down from 1.4 percent in the third quarter.
“Nonetheless, the forecast for Switzerland, too, is marked by considerable uncertainty emanating from international risks,” the SNB said, pointing to the future course of U.S. economic policy, the upcoming elections in Europe and the exit negotiations between the UK and EU.
The Swiss National Bank issued the following statement:
Growth on the mortgage and real estate markets remained fairly constant at a relatively low level in the fourth quarter of 2016. At the same time, the slowdown in price momentum in the residential property market continued. Imbalances on the mortgage and real estate markets nevertheless persist. The SNB will continue to monitor developments on these markets closely, and will regularly reassess the need for an adjustment of the countercyclical capital buffer. ”
Trump Feel Good Financial Narrative Crumbling - Greg Hunter, Craig Hemke Video
Trump Gives Mexico Extraordinary Refugee Surprise
X22Report Central Bankers Tricks Are Now Being Used Against Them to Bring the Economy Down - Episode 1263a
The End of YouTube: The Apocalypse With "We Are Change" _Tim Pool
Three Events Collide On April 26th—Two Drills and An Emergency Trump Meeting—What’s Up?
Ryan, McConnell to Trump: "You f***ed Up, You Trusted Us"
103,000 Entitled Muslims in Michigan Just Woke up to Nasty Surprise From Pissed Off Citizens
FBI Reopens Hillary Clinton Investigation
This Could Save Your Job, House and Children - Emergency Call to Action
Next One Out? Sean Hannity Under Attack as Fox News Continues its War Against Conservatives
Why Earth’s Winds are Changing with Tornadoes, Waterspouts & Plasma Lightning Intensifying
Elite Rituals You Need To Know, Child Drag Queen Hour & Giraffe Baby Live
BART Takeover Robbery: 40 to 60 Teens Swarm Train, Rob Weekend Riders
Iran's Nuclear Weapons Program: On Course, Underground, Uninspected
An Angry Canada Responds To Trump’s Lumber Tariff… And What It Means For The Economy
“Mother Earth will swallow you, lay your body down”
North Korea stages massive artillery drill. US nuclear sub docks in South
As Their 70th Anniversary Of Being Regathered Approaches, Is The LORD Preparing To Visit Israel?
UFO - Corpuscular Ship..24.April.2017 (Video)
Chilling Ghost Apparition Caught on Tape
Curcumin outperforms anti-inflammatory drug for rheumatoid arthritis relief
The 3 Best Major OOC Sports Moments of last 5 years for Florida State, Boston College, and Notre Dame
It’s Trump That Has the Real “PizzaGate” Problem
Tuesday Night Acoustic Guitar Excellence: Trevor Gordon Hall, "Midnight and Raining"
French Mayor Fined for ‘Too Many Muslim Children’ Comment
What Angels Need
Group of Gorillas Approach Man in Ugandan Forest
Trump Comparisons to Ronald Reagan Aren’t Always a Good Thing