Australia & New Zealand
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RBA may be too pessimistic about price pressures

The Reserve Bank of Australia signalled today that it’s unlikely to reverse the tapering of its bond purchases even as Sydney’s virus outbreak is getting worse. We still expect the tight labour market to deliver stronger wage growth and inflation than the Bank is anticipating, prompting the Bank to tighten earlier than its current guidance of 2024.
Marcel Thieliant Senior Japan, Australia & New Zealand Economist
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Australia & New Zealand Economics Weekly

RBA to hike rates this year

The fall in the Australian unemployment rate to 4.2% in December means the labour market is now the tightest it has been since 2008. That all but confirms our forecast that the RBA will end its asset purchase programme at its February meeting. And we now think wage growth will rise to 3% by the end of the year. With inflation set to accelerate faster than the RBA has been anticipating, we have brought forward our forecast for the first rate hike from February 2023 to November this year.  

21 January 2022

Australia & New Zealand Economic Outlook

RBNZ will ease even as RBA starts to tighten

Australia’s Omicron outbreak will hold back the recovery this quarter, but there are plenty of reasons why Australia will outperform New Zealand over the next couple of years. As the labour market has tightened more rapidly than we had anticipated, we’ve brought forward our forecast for the first RBA rate hike from February 2023 to November 2022. By contrast, we expect New Zealand’s housing market to come off the boil this year which should prompt the Reserve Bank of New Zealand to end its hiking cycle at 2.0% this year and start cutting interest rates in 2023. Our views on monetary policy are more dovish than what’s priced into financial markets so we expect 10-year government yields to be little changed. What’s more, we expect the New Zealand dollar to weaken against the Australian dollar.

20 January 2022

Australia & New Zealand Data Response

Australia Labour Market (Dec. 2021)

The further decline in the Australian unemployment rate in December supports our forecast that the RBA will end its asset purchases in February.

20 January 2022

More from Marcel Thieliant

Japan Economics Weekly

Calls for more draconian restrictions growing

The number of new virus cases hit record highs this week as the Delta variant is now spreading widely. While the vast majority of the elderly are now fully vaccinated and deaths have remained low, the number of hospitalisations has surged. With the government acknowledging that the medical system risks being overwhelmed, calls for a nationwide state of emergency or a “hard” lockdown have grown louder, which poses downside risks to our forecast that the economy will merely tread water this quarter.

6 August 2021

Japan Data Response

Japan Wages & Household Spending (Jun. 2021)

The weakness in wage growth in June reflected both a slowdown in regular pay and a drop in summer bonuses. But with the labour market set to tighten and corporate profits on the mend, we think that wage growth will rebound before long.

6 August 2021

Australia & New Zealand Data Response

Australia - International Trade (Jun. 2021)

Given that most of the rise in exports last quarter was driven by higher commodity prices, net exports probably provided another big drag on GDP growth in Q2. But we think that won’t last much longer.  

5 August 2021
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