RTTNews - Thursday, the Monetary Policy Committee of the South African Reserve Bank retained the repurchase rate at 7.5% per annum. In May, the central bank had reduced the interest rate by 100 basis points from 8.5%. Economists had expected the rate to be cut to 7%.

Governor Tito Mboweni said, output growth remains negative while trends in household consumption expenditure have continued to deteriorate. There are however signs that the downturn, both globally and domestically, may be nearing the lower turning point, but the recovery is expected to be slow and protracted.

According to the SARB's inflation forecast, the CPI inflation is expected to continue its moderate downward trend and it will enter the target range during the second quarter of 2010.

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