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Bank of Korea keeps key rate on hold as economic slowdown eases

The Bank of Korea maintained its base rate at 1.25%, following two rate cuts in 2019, as the slowdown in the domestic economy eased.

Exports and construction investment have declined, while facilities investment and consumption growth have improved. Meanwhile, core inflation in the country stood at the mid-zero percent range, and is projected to accelerate to the upper-zero percent level this year.

The central bank's monetary policy board expects global trade protectionism and geopolitical risks to impact global economic growth and financial markets, which have generally stabilized in tandem with the U.S.-China trade progress. However, volatility recently spiked due to military tensions in the Middle East.