UPDATE 1-Mexico inflation forecasts dip in cenbank poll

(Recasts with background)

MEXICO CITY, April 1 (Reuters) – Analysts following
Mexico’s economy slightly lowered their inflation forecasts for
this year in a central bank poll, likely giving policymakers
further breathing room to keep interest rates low.

A survey carried out by the central bank in late March
showed consumer prices were seen rising 3.92 percent this year,
down from a forecast of 3.94 percent in the previous month, the
central bank said on Friday.

Mexican policymakers have warned that they might have to
raise borrowing costs if inflation expectations are poisoned by
a spike in food prices, but the poll suggested economic players
see inflation under control.

The poll is considered a benchmark for inflation
expectations across the economy, which are used by companies
when setting prices and unions when asking for wage increases.

The forecast rate in the poll is within the central bank’s
2-4 percent target range. Most economists expect the central
bank will wait until early next year to raise its target for
overnight inter-bank lending from its current level of 4.5
percent.

The poll also showed that analysts raised their forecasts
for economic growth this year, with growth seen at 4.25 percent
compared with 4.1 percent in the previous monthly poll.

A separate report by the central bank showed remittances
sent home by Mexicans living abroad rose 6.04 percent in
February from a year earlier.
(Reporting by Jason Lange and Michael O’Boyle; Editing by
Leslie Adler)

UPDATE 1-Mexico inflation forecasts dip in cenbank poll