Powered by MOMENTUM MEDIA
subscribe to our newsletter

Rate cuts tipped to ‘boost’ GDP if global risks temper

Moody’s has backed the Reserve Bank’s monetary policy adjustment, adding that it expects the monetary policy boost to help revive the floundering domestic economy.

Earlier this month, the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) monetary policy board decided to decrease the official cash rate for the first time since August 2016, cutting it by 25bps, from 1.5 per cent to a new record low of 1.25 per cent

Following the announcement, RBA governor Philip Lowe noted that “at its core”, the board’s decision to cut rates was made to “support employment growth and to provide greater confidence that inflation will be consistent with the medium-term target”.

The reduction elicited an immediate response from the market, with several lenders, including the big four banks, passing on the 25bps decrease – either partly or in full – to mortgage customers.

Economist at Moody’s Analytics, Katrina Ell, highlighted the need for monetary policy stimulus, pointing to lower than expected GDP figures, driven by weakness in key economic indicators.

Advertisement
Advertisement

“The Australian economy is travelling in a slow lane,” she said. “GDP growth is forecast at 2 per cent in 2019, potentially its weakest annual expansion since 2009 and following 2.8 per cent in 2018.”

She continued: “Consumption is an important weak spot and makes up around 60 per cent of GDP.

“The housing market correction, weak wage growth, and stubborn spare capacity in the labour market are contributors.”

Ms Ell said she expects the RBA to cut rates by a cumulative 50bps before the end of the year (with the possibility of a third reduction), which she said would “play an increased role” in 2019 by “lifting domestic demand”.

“The combination of increased monetary policy stimulus, expectations of the housing market reaching a trough in the third quarter of 2019, and fiscal policy playing a relatively supportive role including via income tax cuts should boost GDP growth to 2.8 per cent in 2020,” Ms Ell said.

PROMOTED CONTENT


However, the economist pointed to external risks, which may offset any benefits of domestic stimulus.  

“Downside risks plague the forecast through 2020, especially from the geopolitical ructions offshore including the US-Canada trade war,” Ms Ell said.

“Further escalation would hurt global growth, and Australia wouldn’t be immune.”

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has also acknowledged the “international” challenges, which could pose a threat to the domestic economy, with others, including AMP chief economist Shane Oliver, flagging recessionary risks associated with global economic instability. 

Fears of a looming recession have prompted some observers, including the CEO of neobank Xinja, Eric Wilson, to encourage borrowers to pocket mortgage rate cuts passed on following the RBAs adjustment, to help build a buffer against downside risks. 

[Related: ‘Triple tailwinds’ could double mortgage growth]

Rate cuts tipped to ‘boost’ GDP if global risks temper
Moody's
mortgagebusiness

Charbel Kadib

Charbel Kadib is the news editor on the mortgages titles at Momentum Media.

Before joining the team in 2017, Charbel completed internships with public relations agency Fifty Acres, and the Department of Communications and the Arts.

You can email Charbel on: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Latest News

The ASIC commissioner has revealed that he was unaware of the government’s proposal to scrap responsible lending laws until it made the a...

The neo-lender has announced that its warehouse loan funding facility has been upsized on the back of growth of its loan originations. ...

Illion’s bank statements and data provider and its credit reporting company have been made accredited data recipients under the Consumer D...

FROM THE WEB

Join a group of highly informed brokers.

Broker Pulse, a community-driven knowledge base of lender performance Reveal exactly which lenders are making life easiest for brokers and their clients by taking this monthly survey and joining a group of highly informed brokers who leverage these insights every month.

JOIN NOW
podcast

LATEST PODCAST: Court cases and penalties

Do you expect to see strong uptake of the HomeBuilder scheme?

Website Notifications

Get notifications in real-time for staying up to date with content that matters to you.