The Bank of Japan kept monetary policy steady on Thursday but said it would re-examine economic and price developments more thoroughly at its next policy meeting, signalling the chance of expanding stimulus as early as October.
As expected, the BOJ maintained its short-term interest rate target at -0.1% and a pledge to guide 10-year government bond yields under a policy dubbed yield curve control (YCC).
Announcing its decision, the central bank said in a statement that it was becoming necessary to pay “closer attention” to the chance that the economy will lose sufficient momentum to achieve the BOJ’s 2% inflation target.
“Taking this situation into account, the BOJ will re-examine economic and price developments at its next policy meeting” when it reviews its long-term growth and price forecasts, it said.
The BOJ's announcement came hours after the U.S. Federal Reserve cut interest rates to sustain a record-long economic expansion and insure against risks such as weak global growth and resurgent trade tensions.
The decision to maintain its interest rate targets was made by a 7-2 vote, with board members Goushi Kataoka and Yutaka Harada dissenting.
BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda will hold a news conference at 3:30 p.m. (06:30 GMT) to explain the bank's policy decision.
Source : Reuters