The governor of China's central bank said more hikes to banks' reserve requirement ratios are possible after previous hikes failed to slow lending or contain inflation. Zhou Xiaochuan told state media on Sunday that inflation in the country is manageable but bubbles in the stock market could cause problems. The People's Bank of China last raised the reserve ratio, which requires banks to hold more cash in a designated account, on April 29, bringing it to 11%. Since last April, the PBOC has raised interest rates three times. Despite the measures, inflation hit 3.3% in March, the highest level in more than two years. The bank had set a warning signal at 3%. Banks gave out US$181.4 billion in loans in the first quarter, about half the total for the entire year in 2006.
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