SBP increases interest rate by 25 basis points
KARACHI – The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Monday announced an increase of 25 basis points in its benchmark policy rate in a bid to control soaring inflation that has affected the entire economy.
The central bank said the decision to increase the interest rate to 7.25% was taken at a meeting of the central board of directors of the State Bank held under the chairmanship of Governor Dr Reza Baqir.
The interest rate rise caught analysts off guard, many of whom were expecting the central bank to leave the rate unchanged.
In its previous policy review on July 27, the central bank had kept the policy rate unchanged at 7% for the sixth time in a row during a 13-month period.
The SBP had aggressively slashed the benchmark interest rate by 625 basis points to 7% from March to June 2020 to minimise the impacts of COVID-19 on the economy. Since then, the SBP has maintained a status quo.
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