September 12, 2017 / 8:19 PM / 10 months ago

UPDATE 1-Argentina posts August inflation of 1.4 percent; interest rate held steady

(Adds central bank held interest rate)

BUENOS AIRES, Sept 12 (Reuters) - Consumer prices rose 1.4 percent in Argentina in August, government statistics agency Indec said on Tuesday, bringing eight-month inflation to 15.4 percent.

The central bank is targeting national inflation between 12 percent and 17 percent for 2017, well below economists’ expectations for 22 percent.

The bank later on Tuesday held its benchmark rate at 26.25 percent, where it has been since April.

“The monetary authority considers it appropriate to maintain its contractive bias and focus its efforts on ending the year with inflation close to 1 percent per month,” it said in its twice-a-month decision.

That would help the bank reach its 2018 target of 10 percent annual inflation plus or minus 2 percent, the statement said.

In greater Buenos Aires, used as a proxy before the national index was launched in July, prices rose 1.5 percent in August and 23.1 percent in the 12 months through August, Indec said. (Reporting by Luc Cohen and Caroline Stauffer; Editing by Lisa Shumaker and Jonathan Oatisd)

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