The Central Bank of Armenia (CBA) raised its refinancing rate by another 50 basis points to 7.0 percent and has now raised it 2.75 percentage points since December 2020 when it began tightening in response to rising global prices and inflationary pressures.
Last year CBA cut its rate four times between March and September by a total of 1.25 percentage points to cushion economic activity during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The last time the refinancing rate was at 7.0 percent was in November 2016 when the central bank was in an easing cycle that began in August 2015 when the rate was lowered from 10.50 percent. This easing cycle continued until February 2016 when the rate reached 6.0 percent.
Between February 2016 and January 2019 CBA kept the rate steady but then began easing in January 2019 and continued this process last year during the pandemic when inflation turned negative in February and March before steadying until December that year when it began to accelerate.
Today’s rate hike comes after CBA in June also said it would consider tightening monetary conditions further to neutralize the risk of accelerating inflation in parallel with the rise in domestic demand.
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