Australia’s central bank kept interest rates unchanged as it waits for three cuts since June to flow through to areas of the economy beyond the property market.
Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe and his board kept the cash rate at 0.75% Tuesday, in line with expectations of economists and money markets. He will want to hold onto his remaining conventional ammunition -- estimated at two more cuts -- and monitor the impact of earlier easing and recent government tax rebates.
The RBA’s final meeting of the year sees policy makers no closer to reviving wages growth and sluggish inflation, trends that have bedeviled central banks worldwide. Australia’s economy has decelerated in the past 12 months as households reined in spending and sentiment remains weak despite the increased cash flow from interest rate and tax cuts.
However, the economy keeps ticking over on strong population growth and state government spending on infrastructure as they try to keep pace with swelling cities. Hiring has also remained resilient in the face of slowing growth, though unemployment of 5.3% isn’t low enough to spur the kind of wage gains the RBA wants.
The Australian dollar edged higher to 68.38 U.S. cents at 2:38 p.m. in Sydney, from about 68.20 cents before the decision.
Source : Bloomberg