News dalla rete ITA

14 Febbraio 2018

Nuova Zelanda


New Zealand’s central bank held interest rates at a record low and projected they would stay there until mid-2019 as inflation remained subdued amid slower economic growth. The Reserve Bank kept the official cash rate at 1.75 per cent and confirmed monetary policy would remain accommodative for a considerable period. The benchmark has been at a historic low for more than a year as New Zealand’s strong exchange rate and weak global inflation exert downward pressure on prices. The RBNZ lowered its inflation forecasts after the kiwi dollar’s 6 per cent gain in the past two months and a slump in business confidence following the election of a Labour-led government last year. The bank now expects inflation to reach the midpoint of its 1-3per cent target in the third quarter of 2020, two years later than previously forecast. The RBNZ has been weighing the potential impact of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s policies around immigration, housing, welfare and industrial relations on economic activity. Overall, the economic growth profile is weaker in the near term but stronger in the medium term. Gross domestic product will rise 3.1 per cent in the first quarter of 2018 from a year earlier, down from 3.8 per cent in the November projection, before quickening to 3.5 per cent by the first quarter of 2019. Inflation will slow to 1.1 per cent this quarter from 1.6 per cent the previous quarter, the RBNZ projected. Inflation won’t reach the 2 per cent midpoint of its target range until the third quarter of 2020. While oil and food prices have recently increased, traded goods inflation is projected to remain subdued through the forecast period. (ICE SYDNEY)