The Bank of Israel has cut its 2012 GDP growth forecast for Israel to 3.2 percent from 3.9%. Its revised GDP growth rate for 2011 is 4.7%.
The Bank of Israel says that growth will slow because of falling demand and lower exports. The Bank of Israel expects exports to grow by just 1.7% in 2012, due to the global economic slowdown and falling foreign trade, and sees imports growing by just 3% in 2012, far lower than in recent years.The Bank of Israel sees 2.3% inflation over the next 12 months, the middle of the government's target range, and below 3.4% inflation for the past 10 months alone.
The Bank of Israel expects the interest rate to be 3% in 12 months time, down from the current level of 3.25%, and lower than its previous prediction of 4% in 2012.