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RBNZ makes way to front load bond-buying, but recognises quantitative easing has its limits, so prepares to use a new combo of monetary policy tools

RBNZ makes way to front load bond-buying, but recognises quantitative easing has its limits, so prepares to use a new combo of monetary policy tools

The Reserve Bank (RBNZ) is acknowledging quantitative easing (QE) has its limits, so is “actively” getting ready to venture into new territory to keep the economy buoyed.

It was only in March that the RBNZ launched its QE, or Large-Scale Asset Purchase programme, to lower interest rates and provide liquidity in financial markets.

It went down this path, recognising the Official Cash Rate (OCR) was already so low, the Bank didn’t have much room to cut it without going into negative territory.

Banks weren’t ready for this, so the RBNZ gave them until the end of the year to get their systems sorted. The possibility of a negative OCR has therefore always been on the cards.

However, the RBNZ, in its quarterly Monetary Policy Statement released on Wednesday, gave its most definitive signal yet that a cut was on the horizon.

Funding for lending ‘linked’ to lower OCR

For the first time it said its preference was to combine a negative OCR with the introduction of a new term lending facility, or “Funding for Lending Programme”. This would see it offer “low-cost, secured, long-term funding” to banks.

The RBNZ explained the programme would “lower bank funding costs, both directly and indirectly, by reducing banks’ demand for, and hence the price of, other sources of funding”.

“This would in turn help to lower the cost of loans for households and businesses,” the RBNZ said.

“Internationally, term lending programmes have also sought to directly encourage the supply of credit via including incentives for banks utilising the programme to expand their lending, providing additional stimulus to the economy.

“A term lending programme may be increasingly useful for supporting the pass-through of monetary stimulus if the OCR were reduced. The programme could help to ensure that bank lending rates remained responsive to declines in the policy rate even as retail deposit rates approached zero.”

RBNZ Governor Adrian Orr didn’t expect retail rates to fall below zero, noting banks still need to attract deposits.

The RBNZ reiterated guidance it gave in March that it would keep the OCR at 0.25% until at least March 2021. However, the likes of Kiwibank chief economist, Jarrod Kerr, believed it could move sooner, especially if New Zealand goes into lockdown for a longer period of time.

Bad Covid news didn’t influence QE expansion decision

Before jumping too far ahead, it’s important to acknowledge the RBNZ on Wednesday expanded and extended its QE programme fairly extensively.

It committed to buying up to $100 billion of mostly New Zealand Government Bonds (NZGB) on the secondary market by June 2022. Its previous commitment was up to $60b by May 2021. To date, the RBNZ has bought $23.7b of NZGBs.

Orr said news on Tuesday night of four people in Auckland getting Covid-19 from an unknown source had an immaterial impact on the RBNZ’s decision.

RBNZ Assistant Governor Christian Hawkesby said the QE programme still had a “a lot of ammunition” to further drive down government bond yields, and thus interest rates.

However Orr acknowledged diminishing returns would kick in. In other words, bond-buying might become relatively less effective the further into the programme the RBNZ goes.

To put extra pressure on yields, the RBNZ said it planned to “front load” the bond buying.

RBNZ’s bond buying cap increased to 60%

But as interest.co.nz wrote on Tuesday, the concern among some economists was that Treasury might not issue enough bonds to enable the RBNZ to buy as much as it wants to, while leaving half of the bonds on issue for other investors to buy, as per what was stipulated in an indemnity provided by the Finance Minister.

To get around this cap, implemented to avoid the RBNZ distorting the market, the Finance Minister changed the indemnity to enable the RBNZ to buy up to 60% of the bonds on issue. He did this on August 9 - underscoring the fact the extension to QE wasn’t a knee-jerk reaction to Covid-19 being found in the community.  

Asked whether he was worried the Government wouldn’t issue enough debt for the RBNZ to buy, Orr said: “We can only play the hand that’s in front of us at any point in time. The choice of instruments [like QE, the OCR, etc] will certainly be a function of the options that are available and operational capacity to achieve that...

“That is very much why we emphasise the separation between fiscal policy decisions and our independent role around maintaining monetary conditions.

“It’s also why we continuously talk about additional monetary instruments and the preparedness and operational capability to implement those.”

Asked what had changed for the RBNZ to feel comfortable owning up to 60% of the NZGBs on issue, Hawkesby said 50% was always a “ballpark figure”, which was in line with what other countries had done.

He said it was more important to look at the size of the QE programme in relation to the size of the economy, as opposed to focusing on the portion of bonds bought by the RBNZ.

RBNZ not considering yield curve targeting or writing businesses loans direct

Hawkesby was clear he wanted government bond yields to be lower, but Orr said the RBNZ didn’t have a target in mind. He said having a target, like his Australian counterpart, wasn’t on the cards, but he wouldn’t rule it out.  

Orr said buying foreign assets was low on the RBNZ’s priority list.

As for the RBNZ giving businesses loans directly, he believed this was unnecessary. Even though banks are tightening their lending to certain business customers, Orr’s preference remained the negative OCR/term lending facility duo.

It’s worth noting the RBNZ launched several facilities during the initial Covid-19 outbreak to provide liquidity to financial markets in exchange for collateral, to support market functioning and the Government’s Business Finance Guarantee Scheme.

Yet the uptake of these schemes has been low, in part because of a lack of credit demand. Businesses are being cautious and drawing down on their existing credit lines. This could change come 2021.  

Would even lower cost debt be stimulatory?

Asked how he could be confident helping banks offer customers even lower cost loans would encourage more lending and be stimulatory, Orr said: “We’ve long said we can’t force people to borrow and we can’t force people to lend…

“What we want to do is make sure that we can facilitate - at the lowest possible level of interest rates - those transactions.”

Orr reiterated that it was time for banks to dip into their capital buffers.

He then talked about fiscal policy (IE government spending on schemes like the wage subsidy) being “the most direct, front of stage” type of stimulus.

Rather than giving households and businesses an incentive to invest, he said fiscal policy saw that investment executed directly.

RBNZ chief economist Yuong Ha pointed out that while low interest rates might not encourage a whole heap of new borrowing, they ease debt servicing costs, which has a “positive cashflow impact”.

Orr noted the significance of this, given how much mortgage debt households have. 

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98 Comments

Pump pump pump. $100 billion (1/3 of GDP) in LSAP is enormous.

And it will sit on banks' balance sheets as an asset - which guarantees a return of bank money, if not a return on it.

What incentive is there for banks to undertake risky lending to GDP qualifying enterprises when the government is being called upon to prop up depositors' consumption with direct transfer payments to their accounts, which are funded by record government debt issuance?

I Think Orr sums up his thinking here :

Orr said: “We’ve long said we can’t force people to borrow and we can’t force people to lend…

“What we want to do is make sure that we can facilitate - at the lowest possible level of interest rates - those transactions.”

So banks will forfeit low return, high capital cost, risk related lending and opt for zero risk weighted assets such as government liabilities.

I think you are 100% correct, this is banks' behaviour that we have already started seeing. I would do the same if I was a bank.

As the old saying goes. A bank will give you an umbrella when the sun is shining and take it away when it rains.
There maybe some around who expect that if they have been loyal to a bank for some 10-20 years, expect loyalty in return. If you want loyalty get yourself a dog. Forget the bank.

The classic metaphor
" Banks give u an umbrella when the sun is shining and take it away when it is raining "
Is see this as a truism ...kinda.
Ie. their greatest lending is when it most risky and the most reluctant lending is when it might be less risky.
Farming sector comes to mind.. white gold era and Banks were going for it.

dp

@Roelof ......We are in a DEFLATIONARY CYCLE .........you cannot force people to borrow and spend , and why would they when its clear that both borrowing costs AND the prices of goods is going to fall .

You might as well just sit on your hands for a year or so as prices of manufactured goods from cars to TV sets falls, (and possibly even fuel and electricity) , and the interest costs of borrowing to buy those things also falls

By February next year , lots of things are going to cost way less than they do today , in both real and nominal terms .

I disagree..
I see us as being in the early stages of an inflationary cycle. I think the mandate for unfettered money printing and massive govt spending is in place, and is happening

I can see Helicopter Money not too far away on the horizon. The Reserve Bank and government wants us to get out into the retail sector and spend, spend, spend.
In the later stages of our last episode of Covid, kiwis realised they couldn't travel overseas so spent up large on vehicles and electrical/ electronics. I guess this activity depends on what sector you live in NZ.
That money has gone now so people are waiting for the next wave to bolster their existing funding or just spend the amount.

I see us as being in the early stages of an inflationary cycle

You could go to your friendly banker that's underwriting the government's issue of this security and others and request the bond lending department offer you a tranche to sell short to reinforce the commitment of your belief.

But first you might want to determine why the RBNZ has conducted a series of O/N bond lending transactions amounting to ~$3.7 billion since QE (LSAP) actions were implemented.

I suggest the RBNZ draining the thick end of $25.0 billion in pristine collateral from the banking/investment community is leading to dislocation which is being addressed virtually every day now.

Take it away Dick Fisher:

MR. FISHER. In summary, I want to mention that, as I said earlier, most of these variations that have been suggested are very un-Bagehot-like. And what I mean by that is, twisting [or QE] entails purchasing assets that investors are fleeing toward, not assets that they are fleeing from.

"You could go to your friendly banker that's underwriting the government's issue of this security and others and request the bond lending department offer you a tranche to sell short to reinforce the commitment of your belief"

Banks don't underwrite NZGB issues, stop randomly making stuff up.

Syndicate for Launch of 15 May 2041 Nominal Bond Announced

From the RBA - Box D page 75-77 (79-81 of 104) PDF Monetary Policy Statement

The increase in banks’ holdings of government debt has created deposits The purchase of government bonds by the banking sector can add to deposits in a similar way to the extension of credit to businesses and households.[2] Banks have purchased some of the newly issued state government debt. In the first instance, those borrowed funds are held by the state governments as a deposit with a commercial bank until the funds are spent.[3] In addition, when the banking sector purchases state government debt in the secondary market from the private (non-bank) sector, it credits the deposit account of the seller to pay for the
transaction. In both cases, new deposits are created. Deposits have risen in recent months, as banks’ holdings of state government debt have increased and as state
governments have issued debt (Graph D.3). Banks’ holdings of Australian Government Securities have also risen recently, alongside an increase in Australian Government borrowing, which has contributed to the rise in bank deposits. However, the process of deposit creation is slightly different when the banking sector purchases debt issued by the Australian Government, since the Reserve Bank is the banker for the Commonwealth of Australia. When the Australian Government
borrows from the banking sector, it holds the borrowed funds as a deposit at the Reserve Bank until the funds are spent
. As the Australian Government spends these funds in the economy, such as in the form of Job Keeper payments to businesses, it adds to deposits held by businesses and, subsequently, to deposits of the household sector through employees of those businesses.

Do you even know what you are posting? Syndication is not underwriting, you do realise that???

What Is a Syndicated Loan?

A syndicated loan, also known as a syndicated bank facility, is financing offered by a group of lenders—referred to as a syndicate—who work together to provide funds for a single borrower. The borrower can be a corporation, a large project, or a sovereign government. The loan can involve a fixed amount of funds, a credit line, or a combination of the two.

A bank syndicated loan is very different to a NI bond syndicate, if you need that explained to you then stop posting about it.

Go ahead and explain.

A syndicated loan is where a group of banks share a single (usually large) loan where generally no single bank has the risk appetite to do the entire lend. The NZDMO bond syndicate panel place bonds with investors on the NZDMO's behalf, for a fee. They do not underwrite the bonds. The DMO/RBNZ use a syndicate panel for new issues until there is enough liquidity of a certain maturity, then move over to tenders.

From the RBA above:
However, the process of deposit creation is slightly different when the banking sector purchases debt issued by the Australian Government, since the Reserve Bank is the banker for the Commonwealth of Australia. When the Australian Government borrows from the banking sector, it holds the borrowed funds as a deposit at the Reserve Bank until the funds are spent..

Underwrite definition: To supply with funding

That has nothing to do with what we have been discussing. Either you want to learn or you can just keep posting rubbish, I'm done if it's the latter.

Get NZDM to publicly refute the RBA's understanding of how banks finance government debt issuance.

Roelof - Inflation requires an excess of demand over supply and a ready supply of money so even if money is easy to get and cheap I cannot see demand exceeding supply in a recession or depression. What I see is deflation or even stagflation.

Definitely the stage is being set for stagflation.

@Roelof .... I really hope and wish you were right, or it turns out the way you see it ............ inflation is way easier to deal with and less damaging than deflation .

We dont have the levels of demand in the economy for inflation to take hold right now .

Also we have a stable to strong NZ$ currency , unlike Argentina , Turkey , Brazil or South Africa , which have weakening currencies , huge budget deficits, massive interest costs ( on existing debts ) poor financial management , corruption , weak systems and massive wealth gaps .

Boatman... I'm thinking more along the lines of a lose in confidence in money as a store of wealth. ... The modern version of the proverbial bank run.
Holders of debt ( deposit holders and Bond holders in particular ) will shift from these financial assets, as a store of value, into harder assets.
This could result in a sort of "crackup boom" where asset prices become dislocated from economic reality ( They kinda are already ).
I'm not so much talking about consumer price inflation , but the effects of Monetary inflation on market perceptions ( a reflexivity moment ).... the devaluation of money
I found this article really informative. It shows things in a historical and Monetary evolution perspective. I pretty much agree with the views.
https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/money-credit-debt-ray-dalio/

What incentive for banks to lend ? You mean the govt putting the tax payer on the risk of 80% of any loans ?
Actually they passed the law that it was 100% on tax payer and I have no idea if they changed it.
Apparently it was a mistake.

According to the Reserve Bank, the new capital requirements mean banks will need to contribute $12 of their shareholders' money for every $100 of lending up from $8 now, with depositors and creditors providing the rest

This isn't true either, banks hold capital against RWA, not the gross lend. The RWA on a mortgage is something like 30%, so they currently hold $3 of capital for every $100 lent.

Not knowing this stuff is no big deal, up until the point you relentlessly post about it that is.

Take issue with Gareth Vaughan

You posted it, if you don't understand something, don't post it.

Get the RBNZ to correct their claim.

Where did the RBNZ claim this? Show me

I am quoting Gareth Vaughan - check the link, call and ask him to verify if he meant what he said. I have no reason to dispute his editorial integrity.

Various regulatory capital minimums apply. For example, excluding additional capital buffers, the ratio of common equity to risk weighted exposures cannot be less than 4.5% (if the ratio is less than 7% restrictions apply to the distributions that can be paid to capital investors). Total Tier 1 must be at least 6% of risk weighted exposures (8.5% if distributions are to be unaffected) and total capital must be at least 8% of risk weighted exposures (10.5% if distributions are to be unaffected). section 101 page 25-26 of 57-PDF

I'm tired of your ignorant attention seeking nonsense - best you fact check your opinions before impugning others.

I can't understand why on Earth would anybody still keep any term deposits with any NZ bank. Utterly baffling.

180 days TD at minus 5% when what you want to buy today, might cost 30% less in 6 month time?
(On the Solvency Risk front, if any NZ bank goes down, anything you may have, anywhere will be worth as much as a TD here. When liquidity/credit availability dries up, selling of anything else take over...)

I thought about this - yes the deflationary effect would still give you a positive return.
But would significant deflation really still kick in, given the massive amount of "stimulus" that the RBNZ is flooding the markets with ? I don't know. I would tend to see inflation close to zero or slightly negative in the next two years, but I have difficulty seeing significant deflation starting to appear. Don't know.

It's not "stimulus". If it were the RBNZ would not have to up it by $40 billion to $100 billion to reinforce it's efficacy, together with a virtual promise to move to a negative OCR.

... the decline of interest rates to zero corresponds with a monetary imbalance in favor of deflation, if at least an abundance of deflationary pressures.

This is something that Milton Friedman also talked about, particularly in 1998 with regard to Japan. He called it the interest rate fallacy, meaning that low nominal interest rates signify "tight" money conditions, or what would be consistent with significant deflationary pressure. It is and remains a fallacy because economists like those at every central bank around the world have decided instead that low rates are only "stimulus."

To correct this view, Friedman pointed out the basic, non-trivial distinction between a liquidity effect and an income effect. Low rates can be stimulative in the short run (the liquidity effect), but over the long run their persistence means something far different. A yield curve is supposed to be upward sloping given the core time value of money and investing. That arises from opportunity cost, meaning the more plentiful the opportunities the greater the time value and the steeper the curve (the income effect). Yield and/or money curves (the eurodollar curve and even the history of the OIS curve) that collapse and remain that way unambiguously demonstrate that "stimulus" deserves only the quotation marks. Link

Very interesting link Audaxes, thanks for the info.

That's right..
At some point. The " market"( people ) will have a paradigm shift away from money as a store of value asset. ...and that will truly mark the final beginning of the end of the current fiat money system.
I think Central banks are either blind to this or feel they have no choice .
It will be a challenge as to how to protect ones wealth. Govts will surely try to appropriate it (tax) , if the political climate is favourable , even thou some of peoples wealth gains is simply a function of fiat money devaluation ( monetary inflation).

Where would you park your money fortunr if not in a TD?

In a bond bubble?

In a property bubble?

In a stock market bubble?

Definitely a good point. The alternatives are not very palatable. Even gold has now turned into a bubble. But if inflation kicks in, maybe the stock market bubble might prove to be the least evil. Quite risky, I admit, as it is a bet that this particular bubble will not burst (current stock valuations are far from realistic).

Like most times, its probably best to have exposure to many different investments with variable risk and in different currencies. I have some money in term deposits, some money in gold, some in silver, some in government bonds, some in listed property trusts, some in shares, some in bonds, some in USD, some in JPY, some in EUR, some in AUD, some in GBP, some in gold miners, some in venture capital, some in ETF's, some in managed funds. Bad things may happen and if you have all your eggs in one basket and that bad thing happens to that asset class - well good luck to you.

:) you must have millions and millions of money with your list of investments. Why not some cryptos by the way?

Even just 1%

I don't yet understand what role they will play in society in the future and tend to avoid investments I don't understand.

I don't yet understand what role they will play in society in the future and tend to avoid investments I don't understand.

But you invest in PMs, ETFs, currencies and venture capital.

Thank you kindly, Independent_Observer. You clearly have a very well diversified investment profile.
My investment strategy is not so dissimilar to yours (I am diversifying too across multiple countries and currencies, for example), but a bit less sophisticated than yours, as I have no money whatsoever invested in venture capital (I have not enough confidence in my own knowledge to embark on it, and my policy is not to invest in stuff I am not familiar with :-).
By the way, I have just gone fully un-hedged in all my overseas investments, as I am betting against the NZ dollar in the medium term. A risky bet, I know (currency movements are notoriously very difficult to predict), but I do think that in the medium term there is only one way for the NZ$ to go - down.
I used to have a significant part of my savings in NZ term deposits, but I am not renewing any as they come to maturity. I am planning to leave very little money in NZ term deposits.

Why not? do you have any better place to put your money in?

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Someone remind me (or more importantly Adrian Orr) what Einstien said about insanity....

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. However, it's working for the property market....

In relation to NZ property this would imply that expecting a negative change in property values over an given 20 period is insanity?

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I can see only two options:
- utter incompetence of the RBNZ, and Orr's in particular
- or Orr knows something that we do not know, and the real prospects of the economy and the dangers to the stability of the financial system are much worse than we think

I'm guessing the latter. His mandate isn't to 'do the right thing', it is to maintain a (flawed) measure of inflation within an (arbitrary) band. The whole system needs a rethink.

I'm guessing the latter. His mandate isn't to 'do the right thing', it is to maintain a (flawed) measure of inflation within an (arbitrary) band. The whole system needs a rethink.

When you're part of the establishment, showing deference to the status quo is necessary for your own self preservation.

He also mentioned something about the same thinking not solving the problem it created...

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Mr Orr is a complete fool !
How has negative OCR worked for EU over 10 years Mr Orr ?
Has it completely destroyed there bond market ?
This is a sell out of NZ.

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Correct, the only real effect that years of negative OCR has created in the EU was a looming crisis in the entire banking system (squeezing the margins down to close to zero), without creating any supplementary demand for credit whatsoever.
And you are right, the bond markets in Europe are just nonsensical, with a complete mis-pricing of risk.
All the stimulus has been going into assets inflation, creating bubbles without improving productivity nor expanding the productive base.

But its a bit like an alcoholic needing to admit they have a problem before they can seek treatment and recover from their addiction. Before that its denial and damage. Thinking lower interest rates and QE will be our salvation is like thinking another 6 pack would fix a drinking problem....

Perfect analogy. This is exactly what it is now all looking to me.

And we all know it. Mr Orr probably knows it. But no one has a palatable alternative to 'just keep pedalling'.
The population is divided into a camp who have (favoured classes of) assets (with recent FHBs being the most vulnerable) who would be financially destroyed by tightening, and those without, the 'boiling frogs', who are increasingly anxious as they see a two-speed future where existing asset-holders' wealth continues to increase beyond reason while those too late to the party are locked out forever. The latter have been politically expendable, thus far, but there are limits.

Yes, one wonders what that will do to societal stability, especially when it is still demanded of those young people to pay the retirement lifestyles of the older, centrally sponsored asset holders. How much wealth can they keep transferring from the young to themselves before the young get angry?

The young I know are surprisingly well aware of how they have been screwed. Rioting isn't on their agenda yet. I think we will eventually see a divisive political figure rise up here that speaks to them, then watch out.

Probably why certain older politicians are ideologically opposed to civics classes in school. The last thing they would want is politically active younger generations.

Here's what the front edge of the wave looked like 2 days ago in Chicago:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/08/10/chicago-looters-riot-ma...

This is a particularly good example. Their 'downsized' lifestyle on their 'meager' retirement income is beyond the wildest dreams of basically anyone under 40.

https://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/homed/retirement/122365701/the-realit...

Rock and a hard place. Don't do anything and system breaks - meaning central bank would need to admit that their philosophy/policies aren't sustainable - or we can just kick the can down the road for another few years (decade possibly..?) before we have to face the issues again, but by which point they will be much more severe. But I guess that will be somebody else's issue by then so can see why it will be the decision of choice.

@my2c ........Mr Orr is not a fool ... he actually knows from empirical evidence elsewhere that a huge number of people use a period of lower interest rates to actually pay down debt .

He knows this , but is possibly living in hope that the lower interest rates will stimulate demand and people will borrow and spend

Zero or close to zero interest rates are known to have a counter-intuitive effect , which we saw in Japan , and more recently in Germany and the US , where savings rates increased, and people paid down debt, when interest rates fell

From what I can see many people are simply keeping their mortgage payments as they were before interest rates dropped, thus reducing the capital debt owing .

They are not spending this "windfall "

There is another category of folks like my wife and I, debt and mortgage free for over a decade, we are actually saving more than we have ever done before

I disagree Japan is another example of ZERO bond market. Would you ever want to hold that.
You go negative you destroy the bond market completely and the only one who will buy is RBNZ.
By all definitions someone doing the same thing over and over is and idiot in my view.
Additionally he is and has destroyed any confidence by the public for the future.

To boot the RBNZ has let the banks out of their recapitalization requirements that makes them actually take some risk in this whole mess, so it cannot be socialised to the tax payer

Low rates just extend and pretend the endless debt scenario down here in NZ, with a side of continued stupid house prices. This is causing massive pressure at both ends of the voting block. It financially strips young workers of their earnings (mortgage and rent payments), strips businesses of their profits thru wage pressure making them focus on automation and de population of staffing, and massively punishes old people that have saved because their savings become increasingly worthless. Loose, loose, loose for tax payers.

How can the RBNZ maintain something that actively punishes everyone but bank profits and property speculators. Its beyond criminal.

Well, the RBNZ are "independent" (read: unaccountable). So they can freely screw the economy and there is absolutely nothing we can do about it (apart from sending/investing our money overseas).

I agree it's a disaster, but let's not pretend there wouldn't be real victims. I would feel genuinely sorry for the FHB cohort who've borrowed to the gills to get a property if we were to see a reset to interest rate normality. The pressure to get in the market when you see prices getting away is really, really hard to resist. Otherwise, bring it on.

'RBNZ chief economist Yuong Ha pointed out that while low interest rates might not encourage a whole heap of new borrowing, they ease debt servicing costs, which has a “positive cashflow impact”.

Orr noted the significance of this, given how much mortgage debt households have.'

This is exactly why cutting the OCR can be stimulatory. Imagine if you refinanced a 500K mortgage from an interest rate of 3.5% to an interest rate of 1.5%. You would have a lot more disposable income to hand.

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But the complete insanity of this is that lowering rates over the past 10 years has created the conditions where we have such high mortgage debt levels - so the central bank is both the arsonist and the fireman. Crazy.

Yep agree with that. Lower interest rates feed the housing ponzi, which means that new entrants need to pay more than they would have had to - eating in to their dispoable income.
But it can't be denied that in the short term, this provides economic stimulation.
I agree with you around the mid to long term implications.

Imagine if you renewed a 500K term deposit from an interest rate of 3.5% down to an interest rate of 1.5%. You would have much less disposable income to hand. As a result, you would start saving more and spending less to compensate for it (or invest in alternative asset classes, potentially creating asset bubbles).
Also, consider a debtor holding a mortgage having concerns about his/her own job or business prospects: he/she would simply bank the excess cash or use it to pay some of the capital back, definitely not go out and spend/invest.

Net effect: no or very little net stimulus to the economy, but the creation of dangerous asset bubbles and a complete mis-pricing of risk.
This is what has happened in Europe and in Japan after many years or zero or negative interest rates. I have lived in Europe for many years and I saw that happening while I was there; it is sad to see that the RBNZ has not learned anything from the EU's and Japan's mistakes.
The RBNZ policy will only create a zombie NZ economy with zero growth for the foreseeable future, little innovation, a dead bond market, zombie companies held alive by such mis-pricing of risk, and resources allocated to asset bubbles.

The system is kaput.

Term lending is another abomination. We are the Foie Gras goose, Orr ramming the nozzle down our throats to pump us full of ever increasing debt.

The elephant in the room is DEFLATION , and Orr stubbornly refuses to even use the "D" word , and everyone in - the-know is looking at the floor or the ceiling pretending there is no elephant in the room

Dude we've had deflation for decades, deflation of the purchasing power of money, that's why we need more debt.

Someone has to pay for all your hard work creating the capital gain in your home so you can afford to retire. And then someone has to pay them, and so on and so on...

Ha, when the RBNZ prints debt... big bad wolf, when the Banks print debt... the sheep are pacified...

Beware the wolf in sheep's clothing...

Jenee, a year younger talking with Yuong Ha ,the RBNZ chief economist a year ago, on negative rates. Sadly only 800 views. At 5.45 minutes in the Younger Ha gives reason why lower rates are net positive .

Don't even have words.

Or we could just let the economic cycle run its course, weed out the weak businesses and finally start rebuilding ?

Survival of the fittest, natural selection of the strongest yeah?

Wow we agree, this would no doubt be great for almost everyone as prices adjusted, and it would be good for yield investors as the market normalizes back to yield mechanics vs rampant gain focus of the last twenty years. It would however "weed out" a lot of the over leverage interest only speculators as drop asset prices and extensions of lending is refused on low equity. So far these seems a dogged determination by he RBNZ to avoid that at all costs. Bank profits ahead of Citizens so to speak.

What exactly are we rebuilding?

We could weed out the poor and over leveraged, non essential services such as architects and landlords...

Replace economic with virus and we could weed out the weak and sick, the old and the poor, the hungry and needy, and rebuild the human species...

Probably you will get much heat because of your post, Yvil, but I very strongly agree with your view.
The delusional thinking of central banks is that they can virtually eliminate the economic cycle.
While you can somewhat flatten the curve (to some extent), on the other hand trying to eliminate the economic cycle is equivalent to trading a future zombie economy, in a prolonged stagnation state, for a supposed elimination of a pending recession. The USSR was lauded in the early 30's for its capacity to eliminate the economic cycle :-). Using counter-cyclical instruments to reduce the impact is OK, but the RBNZ is killing the patient while trying to cure it.

To summarise, a sovereign nation's economy and financial stability (and life in general) is entirely dependent on magical debt creation, creating demand for the debt, and pumping it into existence in ever increasing amounts.

And somehow giving it the label of "money", believing it stores "value" and measures "wealth" makes it entirely rational and reasonable.

And if we continously increase the price of homes, produce more, consume more, add more value, more science, more technology,
more information, be more successful, create more self made millionaires and billionaires, GDP to the Moon, Mars and beyond, we'll be the wealthiest most glorious civilisation ever.

What are we really measuring with all this "wealth"?

Humans, insecure much?

Money is free! Your freedom is not.

"Orr reiterated that it was time for banks to dip into their capital buffers."

He must be having a laugh! Like they are going to ever go into their capital buffers when they are guaranteed to be bailed out by the tax payer. This is fairly land stuff.

I am just keen to know what would happen if the RBNZ was doing the opposite. Lets assume that the RBNZ goes against the trend of virtually all other central banks in the world (the most important one being the Fed) and increases interest rate. What will be the consequences?
One things that comes to my mind is how this would impact NZD. Will this mean that the NZD will be in crazy demand (assuming that the very act does not destroy NZ economy for the next couple of decades, in which case we will see flight of capital and devaluation of NZD) increasing its exchange rate and crippling NZ export?

.

They want too be the only game in town the rbnz. Watch small banks and community banks disappear very soon. While the banks have been the major problem. The rbnz is quietly sending them out of business as they prepare with other central banks to coordinate their global digital currency takeover led by the fed.

Look for physical cash to be removed first as it carries covid folks. Then negative digital currency emerges. Get your wrist out for the chip people as you need it to qualify for the rbnz ubi $300 per week. Ohhh and a covid vaccine shot..

As a future first home buyer this is making me feel sick. Do we want $2m average house prices? What has our society become? Time to join the other 1m Kiwis overseas and be done with NZ (and take my chances with Covid)

I agree. There's nothing here.

If you can find a job, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth are all nice cities in different ways with much lower costs of living than Auckland.

in the same boat as you, have enough dignity to not buying just because scammers told me . FHB's must understand it , unite and stop buying. In this case they will have 3 choices: 1) turn the country into Zimbabwe; 2) markets severely correct and house price become affordable not the house dept; 3)Sell off the country (housing including) to China , e.g. get rid of Foreign Buyers Ban

Really appreciate your work Jenee. There's such a dearth of this kind of in-depth journalism in NZ's miserably barren journalistic landscape. Time for another little donation I think. I have cancelled my Herald Premium subscription, after all.

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