Some in BOJ called for debate on future exit from easy policy -Dec meeting summary By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: People walk in front of the bank of Japan building in Tokyo, Japan, April 7, 2023. REUTERS/Androniki Christodoulou/File photo

By Leika Kihara

TOKYO (Reuters) -Bank of Japan policymakers saw the need to maintain ultra-easy monetary policy for now, with some calling for a deeper debate on a future exit from massive stimulus, a summary of opinions at the central bank’s Dec. 18-19 meeting showed.

“Looking ahead toward the future exit from current monetary policy, it is necessary to examine the positive effects and side effects of yield curve control and negative interest rate policy, and also consider their treatment,” one member was quoted as saying in the summary released on Wednesday.

Another opinion in the summary said the timing of normalising the BOJ’s ultra-loose policy was “getting closer” given the increasing likelihood that Japan would achieve the bank’s 2% inflation target in a sustainable manner.

“To avoid the risk of high prices damaging consumption and undermining the chance of achieving our price target, we should not miss the opportunity to normalise monetary policy,” the opinion said.

At the Dec. 18-19 meeting, the BOJ maintained ultra-loose policy settings and made no change to its dovish guidance that pledges to take additional monetary easing steps as needed.

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