THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: ZURICH -- Switzerland's central bank Thursday cut interest rates to a historic low and said it announced non-standard measures to boost liquidity and curtail the rise of the Swiss franc.
After its quarterly monetary policy meeting, the Swiss National Bank said it has set a new fluctuation band for the three-month Swiss franc London interbank offered rate of 0% to 0.75%, down from 0% to 1% previously.
The central bank's new interest-rate target is 0.25% -- matching a historic low from 2003 -- down from 0.5% previously.
The SNB said after its policy-setting meeting that it will start purchasing foreign currency on foreign exchange markets and buying Swiss franc bonds issued by private-sector borrowers.
The steps, coupled with the interest-rate cut, are aimed to prevent further gains of the Swiss franc against the euro, the SNB said in a statement. >>> By Martin Gelnar and Anita Greil | Thursday, March 12, 2009
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