Home Economy News Bank of Mexico cuts key rate to 11%, says future moves to be data-dependent

Bank of Mexico cuts key rate to 11%, says future moves to be data-dependent


Bank of Mexico cuts key rate to 11%, says future moves to be data-dependent By Reuters

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Published Mar 21, 2024 03:19PM ET
Updated Mar 21, 2024 05:26PM ET

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The logo of Mexico’s Central Bank (Banco de Mexico) is seen at its building in downtown Mexico City, Mexico August 9, 2022. REUTERS/Henry Romero/File Photo

By Valentine Hilaire and Anthony Esposito

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) -The Bank of Mexico, as expected, cut its benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points to 11.00% on Thursday, in a four-to-one decision by its governing board, marking the first rate reduction since the bank embarked on a tightening cycle in 2021.

Banxico, as the Mexican central bank is known, said it will thoroughly monitor inflationary pressures and that at its next monetary policy meetings, “it will make its decisions depending on available information.”

Voting in favor of the rate cut were Banxico governor Victoria Rodriguez and deputy governors Galia Borja, Jonathan Heath, and Omar Mejia. Deputy governor Irene Espinosa voted to hold the rate at 11.25%.

Analysts polled by Reuters had overwhelmingly predicted the board would cut the rate by 25 basis points after holding it steady for seven straight policy meetings.

“In our opinion, the 4-1 vote significantly reduces the probability of a rate pause in May,” said analyst Luis Adrian Muniz at Vector Analisis. “In this sense, continuous cuts seem most likely, at least during the next two quarters.”

Banxico said that headline inflation is still forecast to converge to its target of 3%, plus or minus a percentage point, in the second quarter of 2025. Its forecast for year-end headline inflation was revised upwards to 3.6%, from 3.5% previously.

Goldman Sachs analyst Alberto Ramos in a note to clients that Banxico’s “inflation forecasts for end-2024 are still too optimistic.”

Mexico’s rate cut contrasts with the stance of the U.S. Federal Reserve, which on Wednesday left interest rates unchanged, though Fed Chair Jerome Powell underscored that recent high inflation readings had not changed the underlying “story” of slowly easing price pressures in the U.S. as the central bank stayed on track for three interest rate cuts this year.

In Latin American regional powerhouse Brazil, the central bank on Wednesday cut its benchmark interest rate by 50 basis points at a sixth straight policy meeting, while flagging it may change the course of the current easing cycle after its next decision in May.

Bank of Mexico cuts key rate to 11%, says future moves to be data-dependent

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