URGENT: BOJ cuts economic growth, price forecasts, keeps easing policy

© Kyodo News

The Bank of Japan on Thursday trimmed its economic growth and inflation forecasts for the year through March, keeping its ultraloose monetary policy intact.

At the end of a two-day policy-setting meeting, the Japanese central bank said the economy will likely grow 3.4 percent, rather than the 3.8 percent projected earlier. Core consumer prices excluding volatile fresh food are forecast to stay at 0.0 percent, lower than its earlier projection of a 0.6 percent increase.

The BOJ kept its "yield curve" control program to set short-term interest rates at minus 0.1 percent and guide 10-year Japanese government bond yields around zero percent to keep borrowing costs low for companies and households.