BCRP raises reserve requirement by 25 basis points to cool off lending

Monday, February 28, 2011

Peruvian central bank BCRP announced it was raising the average bank reserve rate for sol- and dollar-denominated deposits by 25 basis points.

In a short press release posted on its web site, BCRP said the measure was intended to bring inflation into line by slowing the rate of bank lending.

The move marks the second time the central bank has increased the reserve requirement this year. The BCRP has been hiking reserve requirements since February 2010.

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Peruvian bank executives have warned that inflation-fighting measures like increases in central bank's benchmark interest rate and reserve requirements could cut into their profits in 2011.

According to BCRP numbers, lending to the private sector is up by 15.2% annually through the end of January, to 108.621bn soles (US$39.121bn), and has been accellerating steadily since January 2010, though it is still down significantly from a peak growth rate of more than 30% reached during 2009.