China raises reserve ratio by 0.5 percent

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BEIJING (AP) — China’s central bank is raising the reserve requirement ratio by 0.5 percentage points effective Jan. 18.

The credit-tightening move is the first adjustment in the amount of money banks are required to keep on deposit since June 2008. It reflects concerns over a possible rise in inflation this year as China’s economy rebounds.

Agricultural credit cooperatives and other rural financial institutions were exempt from the move to ensure adequate financing is available for the spring planting season, the People’s Bank of China said in a brief statement on its Web site posted Tuesday.