The Publlic Bank Of China delivered a 50-basis-point cut in banks' reserve requirement ratio (RRR), effective from next Friday, Feb. 24, after repeatedly defying market expectations for such a move.

It would cut the RRR for the biggest banks to 20.5% from 21%, injecting an estimated 400 billion yuan ($63.5 billion) into the banking system that could be used for lending.

It's not a big surprise. Although Chinese leaders stress policy stability, an RRR cut is necessary. Trade and monetary data in January pointed to some downward pressure on the Chinese economy.

But policy easing will be gradual given the central bank sounded cautious about inflation in its fourth-quarter monetary policy report.China's once turbo-charged economy is likely to slow to 8.2% in the first quarter from 8.9% in the previous quarter.. Good news for Stocks and Metals Traders...
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