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Swiss central bank doing all it can to curb inflation, Jordan tells SonntagsBlick

Swiss National Bank news conference in Bern

ZURICH (Reuters) - The Swiss National Bank is pulling out all the stops to bring Swiss inflation under control, Chairman Thomas Jordan has told newspaper SonntagsBlick, hinting at further rate hikes ahead.

"At the moment inflation is too high in our country and we are doing everything we can to bring it back into the area of price stability," Jordan told the newspaper in an interview published on Sunday.

"Price stability is our main task. We define that conservatively as inflation of less than 2%," he added.

Jordan's comments will be his last before the SNB announces its next policy decision on March 23.

Last week the central banker said the SNB could not rule out further interest rate hikes to tackle inflation which ticked higher to 3.4% in February.

The SNB has already raised rates three times in the last nine months, but more increases are expected from the current level of 1%.

Markets are currently giving a 76% probability that the central bank will raise its policy rate by 50 basis points, and a 24% probability for a 75 basis-point hike.

Jordan, who was answering readers' questions, said he expected a slowdown in the Swiss economy this year, but did not see a recession.

"The SNB's greatest contribution to society is a good monetary policy, because stable prices help everyone," he told the paper.

(Reporting by John Revill; Editing by Hugh Lawson)