Lockdown Could Cut Israel Growth by Half Point: Central Bank
(Bloomberg) -- A fourth coronavirus lockdown could cut Israel’s economic growth by half a percentage point, Bank of Israel Governor Amir Yaron told Bloomberg TV, adding that the central bank wasn’t bound by a ceiling on a major relief program of foreign-currency purchases.
“We have to make every conceivable effort to avoid a lockdown,” Yaron said in an interview on Tuesday, urging the government to expand the eligiblity of booster shots. The bank’s current growth forecast is 5.5%.
Yaron also said the Bank of Israel isn’t “bound” by its $30 billion foreign-currency buying program announced at the beginning of the year and almost exhausted.
“The $30 billion intervention that we mentioned in January was a special step in special circumstances particularly done to instill certainty in a super uncertain time where unemployment was double digits,” he said. “As I have said throughout and before, we are not bound by the $30 billion.”
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