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澳央行继续维持基准利率不变

2014-03-05    来源:新华网    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

Australian Reserve Bank leaves interest rates unchanged for 7 months

澳大利亚储备银行(澳央行)4日宣布,将基准利率维持在2.5%的水平不变,符合市场和经济学家此前预期。

当天是自去年8月澳央行决定下调基准利率至2.5%历史新低之后的第6次会议,目前基准利率已经连续7个月维持不变。

央行在声明中强调,基准利率现在处于“最谨慎的进程”中,而利率的稳定运行也将会持续下去。

央行行长史蒂文斯表示,一些指标显示,澳大利亚消费者需求近期内略有改善,商业条件向好,同时出口增加;然而,通货膨胀率和失业率持续攀升。

相关指标还预示,澳大利亚今年在住房建设领域将实现巨大增长。澳央行就此表示,希望住房建设领域的持续增长能在一定程度上弥补因资源领域投资趋冷而造成的损失。

此外,史蒂文斯仍然坚持,澳元兑美元汇率处于历史高位,而澳元走低能够帮助澳大利亚经济实现重新平衡。

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) has, as widely expected, left official interest rates on hold at its second meeting for 2014, leaving the Aussie cash rate steady at a 60 year low of 2.5 percent.

Since the RBA's last meeting, the numbers on the global economy have been consistent with the below trend growth of 2013, but with what the RBA governor Glenn Stevens calls "reasonable prospects of a pick-up" in 2014.

Stevens said that the U.S. economy 'continues its expansion and the euro area has begun a recovery from recession' -- though clearly a fragile recovery.

"Japan has recorded a pick-up in growth, while China's growth remains in line with policymakers' objectives. Commodity prices have declined from their peaks, but in historical terms remain high," Stevens said.

In its statement the RBA indicated slightly firmer consumer demand foreshadows a solid expansion in housing construction.

In the RBA's statement the board noted, "At the same time, with resources sector investment spending set to decline significantly, considerable structural change occurring and lingering uncertainty in some areas of the business community, near-term prospects for business investment remain subdued."

"The demand has remained weak and, as a result, the rate of unemployment has continued to edge higher. Growth in wages has declined noticeably."

Rising unemployment has been, however, offset by increases in construction and an upbeat retail performance.

Stevens said, "The Federal Reserve has begun the process of curtailing stimulus measures but financial conditions overall remain very accommodative. Long-term interest rates and most risk spreads remain low."

"Equity and credit markets remain able to provide adequate funding, but for some emerging market countries conditions are considerably more challenging than they were a year ago."

Although official rates remain on hold, mortgage interest rates and costs are falling as competition amongst banks for market share intensifies in a generally positive environment for home buyer activity in most housing markets.

The National Australia Bank (NAB)on Monday fired the first shots when it lowered the new two-year rate to the lowest it has been in more than 20 years.

"We have seen increased demand for fixed-rate home loans in the past 12 months, so we know many home owners are looking for certainty, whether they are investors or first home buyers, and NAB is offering that through these market-leading fixed home loan rates," Group Executive, Personal Banking, Gavin Slater told Xinhua.

Buyer activity in the Sydney weekend home auction market remains at record levels with the Melbourne auction market strengthening since last year. Last weekend Sydney's auction clearance rates were recorded beyond 80 percent, an indication of almost wholesale buyer confidence.

The RBA is also clearly 'banking' on an already robust and strengthening housing market, where all major capitals have recorded real growth, with attention particularly on Sydney where returns are now approaching record levels.

Tony Nelson, a Sydney-based director with Sunrise Property Group (SPG) said, "Only 12 months ago, property analysts, economists, real estate agents and journalists were lamenting two years of negative growth and the worst property results in 16 years. "

"Industry was crying out for more rate cuts. Memories of the GFC were fresh in memories and there were serious concerns about Europe's ability to recover. ..By June 2013, analysts were tentatively predicting a mild recovery. How quickly things can change," Nelson added.

Andrew Wilson, Senior Economist for Australian Property Monitors (APM) said, "Rising unemployment will be the catalyst for any future cut in interest rates although as a lagging indicator of overall economic activity, the Bank will nonetheless be more positive about the prospects of an improvement in the general economy over the medium-term."



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