UPDATE 2-Chile central bank says inflation will be slower to cool
(Adds central bank comments on interest rate, background)
By Antonio De la Jara
SANTIAGO, March 30 (Reuters) - Chile's central bank said on Monday that inflation will not ease as quickly this year as it had forecast and economic growth will recover from the five-year low in 2014, likely dissuading the bank from resuming monetary easing in 2015.
In its quarterly Monetary Policy Report (IPoM), the bank forecast inflation at the end of 2015 at an annualized 3.6 percent, above its previous view of 2.8 percent.
Annual inflation has remained stubbornly above the central bank's 2 percent to 4 percent tolerance range since April 2014, and has been a key factor in the bank keeping its benchmark interest rate steady at 3.0 percent.
The bank said inflation will "continue to converge towards target, but will remain above 4 percent in annualized terms for some more months, nearing 3.0 percent during 2016."
HINT ON RATE RISE
The bank kept its full-year 2015 growth forecast for Chile, the world's top copper exporter, unchanged at a range of 2.5 percent to 3.5 percent, and said there should be more evident recovery toward the end of the year. Continuación...