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Russia Central Bank Cuts Rate By 25 Bps

Russia's central bank decided to reduce its key rate by a quarter point, on Friday, as widely expected.

The Board of Directors trimmed the key rate to 7.50 percent from 7.75 percent. The bank had lowered the rate by 50 basis points in December.

Annual inflation is much less likely to exceed 4 percent this year. In this environment, the bank will continue to reduce the key rate and may complete the transition from moderately tight to neutral monetary policy in 2018, the bank said.

The bank noted that the balance of inflationary and economic risks has shifted slightly towards the risks to economic growth. The uncertainty over the situation in global financial markets has increased, the bank said.

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