While recent market turmoil may have sparked a rate-hike trend among emerging market central banks, one Asian economy could buck the trend and stay pat for the rest of the year.
Despite the ringgit hovering near a four-year low as a result of the ongoing selloff in emerging markets, Bank Negara Malaysia left its overnight policy rate (OPR) unchanged at 3 percent for a 16th straight meeting on Wednesday. The decision stands in stark contrast to Turkey’s shocking 425 basis point rate rise, South Africa’s 50 basis point increase and India’s surprise 25 basis point hike.
The general consensus is for Malaysia to hike rates this year, but OCBC Bank has a contrarian call.
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