Friday, May 29 2015
Reserve Bank deliberations suggest another interest rate cut may be coming in the months ahead.
The last minutes indicate the board had already decided ahead of this month’s meeting that it had to cut rates – the only question was whether to do so in May or June. Board members also discussed several other factors that suggest another rate cut might be coming, including a sluggish local economy.
Compared to earlier forecasts, growth and unemployment statistics are now likely to take longer to improve, according to the minutes.
At the same time, inflation is also expected to be slightly lower than previously forecast, giving the board scope to cut rates.
One argument against a third rate cut in 2015 would be the fear that this might foster imbalances in the housing market.
However, while board members expressed concern about “very strong” price growth in Sydney and “strong” growth in Melbourne, they saw “much more muted” trends in other capital cities.
They also noted the most recent data, which showed that there had been no increase in housing credit in recent months, either for investment or owner-occupancy purposes.