January 21, 2015 / 4:24 PM / 3 years ago

Canada rate cut clearly driven by oil price drop: finance minister

DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) - Canada’s Finance Minister Joe Oliver said on Wednesday that a decision by the country’s central bank to cut interest rates had been clearly influenced by a decline in the price of oil.

Canada's Finance Minister Joe Oliver speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa November 20, 2014. REUTERS/Chris Wattie

Ending the longest period of unchanged rates since 1950, the central bank cut the overnight rate to 0.75 percent from 1 percent, where it had been since September 2010, and it dramatically slashed its inflation and growth outlook for the coming year.

Oliver declined to offer a judgment on the wisdom of the decision, citing central bank independence, but told a panel at the World Economic Forum in Davos that the oil price had “clearly influenced” the move.

Reporting by Noah Barkin

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