Minutes of Monetary Policy Meeting held on 14 December
At the Monetary Policy Meeting on 14 December, the Executive Board of the Riksbank decided to leave the repo rate unchanged at –0.35 per cent. Purchases of government bonds will continue for the first six months of 2016, as was decided in October. The Board is also highly prepared to make monetary policy even more expansionary, even between the ordinary monetary policy meetings. The expansionary monetary policy underlines the Riksbank's aim to safeguard the role of the inflation target as nominal anchor for price-setting and wage-formation.
It was noted at the meeting that the Executive Board agreed on the economic prospects and the inflation outlook described in the draft Monetary Policy Report.
The very expansionary monetary policy pursued by the Riksbank is contributing to strengthening economic activity, falling unemployment and an upward trend in inflation. GDP growth is expected to remain high and CPIF inflation will stabilise around 2 per cent in 2017. There is still considerable uncertainty regarding the strength of the global economy however, and central banks abroad are expected to pursue an expansionary monetary policy for a long time, which also affects Swedish monetary policy.
Overall, growth in the Swedish economy has been slightly stronger than expected since the October Monetary Policy Meeting. However, the latest inflation outcome shows that the upturn in inflation is volatile and not yet on a firm footing. To safeguard the resilience of the upturn in inflation, monetary policy therefore still needs to be very expansionary.
The Executive Board unanimously agreed to leave the repo rate unchanged at –0.35 per cent and to continue to purchase government bonds for the first six months of 2016 in line with the decision in October.
The Riksbank remains highly prepared to make monetary policy even more expansionary, even between the ordinary monetary policy meetings. Several members also noted that if the exchange rate appreciated too rapidly, currency interventions could be necessary. The monetary policy being pursued aims to limit the risks of continued low inflation and to contribute to inflation expectations which are compatible with the inflation target.
Several members of the Executive Board once again underlined the importance of promptly tackling the risks linked to the housing market and households' debts. Finally, several members also commented on the monetary policy framework and welcomed a broad and public discussion about potential improvements to the framework.