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China's central bank on Friday left its benchmark rate for loans unchanged for the 16th straight month, according to a statement on the People's Bank of China website.
The Loan Prime Rate, guiding companies' cost of borrowing, remains at 3.85% for the one-year maturity and 4.65% for five years. Market participants watch the LPR for any indications the PBOC would lower interest rates.
The PBOC had left the one-year Medium-term Lending Facility rate which is viewed as being closer to market rates and is linked to LPR, at 2.95% on August 15 when it rolled out the maturing CNY700 billion MLF with a renewed CNY600 billion.
Since the previous LPR reform in August 2019, the PBOC has cut 46 bps off the one-year LPR and 20bps off the five-year. In April 2020, after a 6.8% contraction in Q1 GDP, the PBOC cut the one-year LPR by 20 bps and the five-year by 10 bps, the biggest cuts since the LPR mechanism was reformed in August 2019.