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Articles

Why long-term interest rates are more likely to fall.

By | Insights
While investors are currently preoccupied with shorter-term questions of higher interest rates, inflation and tightening economic conditions, the reality is interest rates have been on a consistently declining path for...
While investors are currently preoccupied with shorter-term questions of higher interest rates, inflation and tightening economic conditions, the reality is interest rates have been on a consistently declining path for the last three decades and those forces responsible for this phenomenon remain relevant and in some cases are likely to strengthen. What are some of these forces? The increase in size and influence of governments and central banks (financialization) is highly disinflationary and no longer reversable. Central banks decision to manage through crises, with as little damage as possible to financial assets (2001, 2008, 2020) by pumping in liquidity and... Read more

Bank economists continue to ‘lean’ on the RBNZ

By | Insights
I wrote an article recently highlighting the disadvantages of being a ‘first mover’ in normalizing interest rates ahead of other developed economies such as Australia and the US. The premise...
I wrote an article recently highlighting the disadvantages of being a ‘first mover’ in normalizing interest rates ahead of other developed economies such as Australia and the US. The premise being, this would be premature considering our modest progress in getting the population vaccinated and the likely upward pressure on our exchange rate, at a time when businesses are already facing cost pressures and the uncertainty of future lockdowns. Our local bank economists clearly disagree. Despite the events of this week, they still appear in no mood for a period of further assessment with one bank on record requiring the... Read more

First mover disadvantage

By | Insights
It was not that long ago that New Zealand was once referred to as the ‘rock star’ economy. A rather infamous quote from a bank economist describing our envious economic...
It was not that long ago that New Zealand was once referred to as the ‘rock star’ economy. A rather infamous quote from a bank economist describing our envious economic position at the time relative to our global peers. This reference was premised around three key factors (i) above trend growth, (ii) a residential housing boom and (iii) rising dairy prices driven by strong demand from China. At the time, the Reserve Bank were compelled to raise interest rates on fears of an overheating economy due to inflationary pressures. This strategy of raising interest rates out of step with other... Read more

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