The Federal Reserve may have left interest rates steady last week, but the central banks of several Asian countries are due to make key policy decisions during the coming week.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will announce its decision on Tuesday and Moody’s Analytics expects the RBI will cut its policy rate by 25 basis points to 6.5 percent. ANZ said in a note Friday it expects investments in India to remain subdued due to high leverage.
The Reserve Bank of Australia’s decision makers are also scheduled to meet Tuesday and economists expect the bank to keep interest rates on hold at the record low 2 percent.
According to Moody’s Analytics, “The domestic economy continues to improve, supported by steady employment growth. The recent appreciation of the Australian dollar will likely weigh on the board’s decision, but this trend is unlikely to persist, as commodity prices come under downward.”
Concerns over bad debt have been weighing on Singapore’s central bank, the Monetary Authority of Singapore, or MAS, which is set to meet this week, with a decision expected Thursday. Analysts expect it will keep rates unchanged.
In a note on Friday, a spokesman at Goldman Sachs said, “Given the fiscal support in the fiscal 2016 budget, we expect GDP (gross domestic product) growth for this year should remain well within the government’s forecast range, although moderating from the prior year… our expectations of a weakening of the Singapore dollar and a pick-up in fuel prices…”
In the U.S., the Federal Open Market Committee will be releasing the minutes of its March meeting on Wednesday and they will be closely monitored following speculation that the Federal Reserve might raise interest rates in April.