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Today's Headlines BI Rate

  • Lower Oil Imports in Q3-2013 will Support Indonesia's Weakening Rupiah

    The Indonesian government assumes that the recently increased prices of subsidized fuels will translate into lower oil imports from the third quarter of 2013. Lower oil imports will result in lower demand for foreign currencies and, as such, will support Indonesia's currency, the rupiah. The value of the IDR rupiah is also influenced by market participants' expectation of inflation. Indonesia's central bank (Bank Indonesia) projects inflation to rise to 2.77 percent in July, and to slow down to 1 percent in both August and September.

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  • Indonesian Banks Post Good Financial Results in Semester I-2013

    Despite a higher benchmark interest rate, higher inflation, a weakening rupiah, and global economic turmoil, four out of seven Indonesian banks that released their financial results over the first half of 2013, have posted double-digit growth. The seven banks show a combined growth of 16.2 percent. Although it is an impressive figure, it is a couple of percentage points lower than last year's performance. Indonesia's economy has slowed down to an annual economic growth of six percent and this has impacted on domestic demand for credit loans.

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  • Indonesian Government: No Need for Panic over Weakening Rupiah

    Although Indonesia's currency, the IDR rupiah, has continued its weakening trend, Indonesian authorities are reassuring the people that this development is not as much caused by domestic factors but rather due to the rising US dollar against other currencies. According to data from Bank Indonesia, the Indonesian rupiah has weakened 5.99 percent to the US dollar in 2013. It is also clear that the central bank of Indonesia has decided to let the rupiah depreciate gradually instead of using its foreign exchange reserves to support the currency.

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  • Weakening of Indonesian Rupiah Against US Dollar is Part of Global Trend

    According to various analysts and the central bank of Indonesia, the weakening of the IDR rupiah should not be too alarming as there currently is a global trend in which currencies, worldwide, weaken against the US Dollar. This situation is triggered by the economic recovery that has been experienced by the world's largest economy recently. Compared to other ASEAN members, the rupiah's decline is normal. The central bank adds that foreign capital inflows will return and will strengthen the country's currency.

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  • Inflationary Pressure due to Indonesia's Higher Food Prices during Ramadan

    Prices of certain food products in Indonesia have risen steeply during the first week of Ramadan, the Islamic fasting month. Higher prices are a sensitive issue at the moment as the country is fighting higher inflation after subsidized fuel prices were increased in June. Therefore, the central bank raised its benchmark interest rate by 50 bps to 6.50 percent last week. If inflation exceeds 2.3 percent in July (month to month) then it might result in another upward revision of the interest rate, thus slowing down Indonesia's economic growth.

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  • Central Bank of Indonesia Raises Benchmark Interest Rate to 6.50%

    The central bank of Indonesia, Bank Indonesia, has raised its benchmark interest rate (BI rate) and deposit facility rate (Fasbi) by 50 bps to 6.50 percent and 4.75 percent respectively. Bank Indonesia governor Agus Martowardojo said that this policy change is necessary to keep Indonesia's inflation figure within the target range. Last month, prices of subsidized fuels were raised by the government, which led to higher inflation in June (5.90% YoY). However, the impact of higher fuel prices is expected to make a deeper impact in July.

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  • Indonesian Motorcycle Sales Strong, but may Slow down in Second Half 2013

    Motorcycle sales in Indonesia rose 20 percent (year-on-year) to 661,282 units in June 2013. The head of the commercial department of the Indonesian Motorcycle Industry Association (AISI), Sigit Kumala, said that sales peak in June and July because of the Lebaran tradition that follows the holy fasting month (which starts tomorrow). After this fasting month, many Indonesians go back to their places of birth for a couple of days. Motorcycles are one of the modes of transportation used for this short holiday.

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  • Bank Indonesia Raises its Interest Rate to 6.0% to Support the Rupiah

    Bank Indonesia - BI - Interest Rate Increase 6% - Indonesia Investments

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) decided today to raise its benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points to 6.0 percent. The decision was made amid concerns about the inflationary impact of a hike in subsidized fuel prices (planned this June) as well as increasing uncertainty in global financial markets as central banks' may scale back stimulus programs. The Indonesian rupiah has weakened considerably in 2013 and forms the worst performer in Asia after the Japanese yen among the 11 most-traded currencies tracked by Bloomberg.

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  • Statistics Indonesia: Indonesia Records Deflation of 0.03 Percent in May

    According to data released by Statistics Indonesia (Badan Pusat Statistik, abbreviated BPS), a non-departmental government institution, Indonesia's inflation figure eased 0.03 percent (month-to-month) in May 2013. The Head of BPS, Suryamin, said that it was the first time since ten years that the country experienced deflation in the month of May. The deflation figure is particularly triggered by the government's policy to allow for more imports of certain food products (such as onions, garlic, tomatoes, and chili).

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  • Bank Indonesia Revises Down GDP Growth, Interest Rate Kept at 5.75%

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia, or BI) kept its benchmark interest rate at 5.75 percent and its overnight deposit facility rate (FASBI) at four percent as the country's core inflation figure is still within the target range of the central bank (3.5-5.5 percent). Core inflation currently stands at 4.12 percent (YoY). However, as the price of subsidized fuel is expected to rise in June, inflation may increase and could trigger a policy response by Bank Indonesia later this year.

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Latest Columns BI Rate

  • Analyst Opinion: Bank Indonesia's Interest Rate Might Be Raised Again

    According to Fauzi Ichsan, Managing Director at Bank Standard Chartered Indonesia, there is a possibility that Indonesia's central bank (Bank Indonesia) will raise its benchmark interest rate (BI rate) from 7.50 percent to 8 percent at the next Board of Governor's Meeting as the country's current account deficit has not improved markedly yet. The deficit stood at about 3.5 percent of the country's gross domestic product (GDP) at the end of 2013. Bank Indonesia intends to lower the deficit to a sustainable level of below 3 percent in 2014.

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  • Indonesia Attracts Investments in Car Components Worth USD $1.5B

    Indonesia Attracts Investments in Automotive Components Worth USD $1.5B

    In 2014, Indonesia is expected to see capital inflow of between USD $1 billion and USD $1.5 billion of funds for investments in the country's car components industry. About 20 to 30 companies are eager to expand or start business in this sector of Southeast Asia's largest economy (each investing about USD $50 million). Indonesia's car industry is attractive due to record high car sales in recent years (triggered by strong domestic GDP per capita growth) as well as double-digit export growth (although coming from a low base).

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  • ICRA Indonesia’s Monthly Economic Review; a Macroeconomic Update

    ICRA Indonesia, an independent credit rating agency and subsidiary of ICRA Ltd. (associate of Moody's Investors Service), publishes a monthly newsletter which provides an update on the financial and economic developments in Indonesia of the last month. In the December 2013 edition, a number of important topics that are monitored include Indonesia's inflation rate, the trade balance, the current account deficit, the IDR rupiah exchange rate, and gross domestic product (GDP) growth. Below is an excerpt of the newsletter:

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  • Official Press Release Bank Indonesia: Interest Rates Left Unchanged

    Today, Bank Indonesia kept its benchmark interest rate (BI rate) at 7.50 percent at the Board of Governors’ meeting. The lending facility rate and deposit facility rate were maintained at 7.50 percent and 5.75 percent respectively. An assessment of the economy in 2013 and outlook for 2014-2015 indicated that such policy is consistent with ongoing efforts to keep inflation within the target of 4.5±1 percent in 2014 and 4±1 percent in 2015, as well as to help reduce the current account deficit to a sustainable level.

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  • Jakarta Composite Index Up 0.59% on IMF's Economic Growth Upgrade

    Although Indonesia's benchmark stock index (Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) ended the first trading session down, it recovered in the second half of Wednesday's trading day (08/01). Investors were eager to buy stocks that have experienced a significant correction since May 2013. Moreover, as the Indonesia Stock Exchange reduced trading sizes to 100 shares per lot from 500 shares (to increase market liquidity and attract more retail investors), investors were able to benefit from these premium prices.

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  • Despite Long Term Growth, Indonesia's Sales of Motorcycles Fall at End 2013

    Despite Long Term Growth, Indonesia's Sales of Motorcycles Fall at End 2013

    Domestic sales of motorcycles in Indonesia are expected to have fallen by 20 percent to 550,000 in December 2013 compared to the previous month (688,527). According to the Chairman of the commercial department of the Indonesian Motorcycle Industry Association (AISI), Sigit Kumala, this decline is not the result of slowing demand for motorcycles but due to the limited amount of working days amid the Christmas and New Year holidays. This then led to less production and distribution of motorcycles to Indonesian dealers.

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  • Indonesia Rupiah Exchange Rate Remains under Pressure on Monday

    From the start of today's trading day (06/01), the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate depreciated against the US dollar. Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, Indonesia's currency fell 0.48 percent to IDR 12,238 per US dollar at 13:00 local Jakarta time. This declining trend is in line with the majority of other Asian Pacific currencies. With the exception of the Australian dollar and the Japanese yen, the US dollar appreciated against all Asia Pacific currencies in the morning of Monday (06/01).

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  • Indonesia's Trade and Inflation Data Cause Positive Start of the Year

    Again positive news for Indonesia's trade balance. Last week, Statistics Indonesia announced that the largest economy of Southeast Asia posted a USD $776.8 million trade surplus in November 2013 (the largest monthly trade surplus since March 2012). After the (revised) USD $24 million trade surplus in October 2013, November was the second straight month in which the country posted a surplus. This development is important to gain investors' confidence as Indonesia's current account deficit has been a major cause for concern.

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  • Overview of the Performance of Indonesia's Stock Market in 2013

    As we approach the end of 2013 it is worth taking a look back to the performance of the stock market of Indonesia this year. At the start of the year, investors and analysts were positive that the country's benchmark stock index (known as the IHSG or Jakarta Composite Index) would post steady growth. Initial forecasts claimed that the IHSG could surpass the 5,000 points level by the end of 2013 from 4,300 at end-2012. The actual performance of the IHSG in fact exceeded expectations as in May 2013 the index moved beyond 5,200 points.

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  • Searching for Financial Stability: Indonesia's BI Rate Policy Questioned

    On Thursday 12 December 2013, Indonesia's central bank (Bank Indonesia) announced that the country's benchmark interest rate (BI rate) remains unchanged at the level of 7.50 percent in December 2013. This announcement was a bit surprizing as about 80 percent of analysts expected Bank Indonesia to raise the BI rate in order to support the depreciating Indonesia rupiah exchange rate. Starting the year at IDR 9,670 per US dollar, the rupiah has fallen around 25 percent to IDR 12,081 per US dollar.

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