The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) held its monthly meeting today, Tuesday, with newly appointed governor Michele Bullock at the helm. This marks Bullock's first time presiding over the board's monthly meetings, offering Australians an initial insight into her approach to monetary policy.
Under the leadership of previous governor Philip Lowe, interest rates were maintained at 4.1% across three successive meetings. However, with the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics data showing an inflation rate of 5.2% for the year to September, there is speculation that a rate hike could be on the horizon.
Despite this, most economists predict a continuation of the current holding pattern. Among 25 economists surveyed by Bloomberg, only one anticipates a rate hike today, while financial markets assess the likelihood of a rate cut at a mere 7%. The prevailing sentiment suggests that the extended pause in rate adjustments should not be interpreted as an end to potential hikes. Interest rates have been at an 11-year high of 4.1% since June.
This comes after Lowe faced significant criticism for his role in recent rate hikes during his tenure as governor. In his final days in office, Lowe defended his record amidst a barrage of 'vitriol' and 'personal attacks'.
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