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Bank of Canada sees rates on hold despite some calls for hike

Tuesday, 7 Jan 2014 | 3:15 PM ET

OTTAWA, Jan 7 (Reuters) - The Bank of Canada should keep its key interest rate on hold until the data persuades it otherwise, central bank chief Stephen Poloz said on Tuesday, adding that he was not worried about calls from some international players to tighten.

His comments follow controversial remarks by Canada's finance minister on Sunday suggesting there would be pressure to raise interest rates in 2014.

"For us, minimizing the risks of making a big mistake here is what we're trying to do, and that tells us that we should be holding rates where they are until the data flow changes our mind," Poloz said in an interview with the CBC television.

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty told CTV television on Sunday there would be some pressure to raise rates this year because of the U.S. Federal Reserve scaling back its bond purchasing program. He also cited reports by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the International Monetary Fund recommending rate increases.

(Reporting by Louise Egan; Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson)