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Indonesia raises interest rate for 1st time since 2014

Central bank's decision follows that of other Asian nations amid rupiah's slide

Bank Indonesia wants to shore up the rupiah to prevent living costs from rising in the run-up to elections. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

JAKARTA -- Indonesia's central bank has raised its benchmark interest rate for the first time in almost four years as it battles to stop the slide of the rupiah against rising U.S. interest rates.

Bank Indonesia on Thursday decided to hike its benchmark seven-day repo rate by 25 basis points to 4.50%, marking the first rate increase since November 2014, when the central bank operated under a different benchmark rate.

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