RBA keeps cash rate at 3.5% as global outlook dims 3 Jul 2012
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Australian central bank keeps cash rate at 3.5% as global outlook dims
July 3 (BusinessDesk) - The Reserve Bank of Australia kept the cash rate unchanged at 3.5 percent, saying inflation is likely to stay within its target range, though the international outlook has dimmed.
“With inflation expected to be consistent with the target and growth close to trend, but with a more subdued international outlook than was the case a few months ago, the stance of monetary policy remained appropriate,” Governor Glenn Stevens said in a statement.
The RBA sliced 75 basis points of the benchmark rate in the past two months to help underpin an economy that has proved resilient in the face of a weaker global outlook. Gross domestic product grew 1.3 percent in the first quarter, more than twice the pace expected. At the same time, manufacturing data from China to Europe to the US has printed weaker.
“More recent indicators continue to suggest weakening in Europe and a slower pace of growth in China,” Stevens said. Elsewhere in Asia the trend “is unclear” and the US “continues to grow at a modest pace.”
The Australian dollar didn’t move much after the statement, as no change in rates was expected. It traded recently at US$1.0264 from US$1.0272 immediately before.
Europe “will remain a potential source of adverse shocks for some time” though financial markets have initially responded positively “to signs of further progress towards longer-term sustainability in European financial affairs,” Stevens said.
“While capital markets remain open to corporations and well-rated banks, low appetite for risk has seen long-term interest rates faced by highly rated sovereigns, including Australia, decline to exceptionally low levels,” he said.
Australian economic figures suggest the economy “continued to grow in the first part of 2012, at a pace somewhat stronger than had been earlier indicated,” Stevens said.
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