Fed takes a keen interest in RBA’s bond buying

Original article by Sarah Turner
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 27 : 18-Jun-20

The yield on three-year Australian government bonds has traded within a narrow range of 0.21 per cent to 0.28 per cent since March, when the Reserve Bank commenced a targeted bond-buying program aimed at keeping the yield at around 0.25 per cent. The success of yield curve control in Australia has prompted the US Federal Reserve to assess the strategy, although Stephen Halmarick from the Commonwealth Bank says it is unlikely to adopt this in the near-term. The Federal Reserve’s focus has been on buying a certain amount of bonds each month.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, UNITED STATES. FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA

$A doing its job to help stabilise the economy

Original article by Sarah Turner, Jonathan Shapiro
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 31 : 22-Apr-20

The Reserve Bank of Australia has bought $47bn worth of federal and state government bonds since 20 March. The central bank has progressively reduced its daily bond purchases from $5bn to just $500m since then, and it will now buy federal government bonds three times a week and state bonds just once a week. Meanwhile, RBA governor Philip Lowe says the Australian dollar fell more sharply than he had expected in March. It reached a low of $US0.5741 and has since recovered to around $US0.63. Lowe says the currency has been a "great shock-absorber" for the domestic economy over the last three decades.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA

Reserve Bank now important bond player

Original article by Sarah Turner
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 31 : 15-Apr-20

Su-Lin Ong of RBC Capital Markets says the federal government has issued some $48bn worth of bonds so far in 2019-20. She estimates that the Reserve Bank of Australia has bought about $36bn worth of these government bonds in the last three weeks, as part of its quantitative easing program. Westpac’s Damien McColough notes that the central bank has emerged as one of the largest bond fund managers in the local market. Meanwhile, Ong says government bond issuance for 2019-20 could potentially top $160bn.

CORPORATES
RBC CAPITAL MARKETS, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC

Reserve Bank likely to slow bond buying

Original article by Jonathan Shapiro
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 30 : 7-Apr-20

The Reserve Bank of Australia’s quantitative easing program commenced on 20 March, and the central bank initially began purchasing $5bn worth of commonwealth government bonds per day. It has bought some $31bn of such bonds to date, including $10bn in the week ended 3 April. The RBA has been gradually been winding back its bond buying, and Damien McColough of Westpac says that even if its current momentum is maintained it would hold about $80bn worth of government bonds by the end of June. This would constitute about 30 per cent of the government bonds on issue. The RBA has also bought some $5bn worth of state government bonds.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC

$105b bridge across the chasm

Original article by Matthew Cranston, James Eyers, James Frost, Jonathan Shapiro
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 20-Mar-20

Reserve Bank of Australia governor Philip Lowe has warned that the cash rate is likely to remain at the new record low of 0.25 per cent for three years. The emergency interest rate cut on 19 March is the RBA’s first out-of-cycle move since 1997; it has coincided with the announcement of a government bond-buying program which aims to ensure that the benchmark three-year bond yield remains at around 0.25 per cent. Lowe says there will be no limit to the bond-buying program. The RBA has also announced a $90bn line of credit for banks to provide low-interest loans to small and medium enterprises; the federal government will provide an additional $15bn to small lenders to help with their funding.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA

Economic dose of medicine

Original article by Patrick Commins
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 17-Mar-20

The Reserve Bank of Australia is set to make an emergency interest rate cut in response to the coronavirus pandemic. RBA governor Philip Lowe has also flagged a government bond purchasing program to ensure that financial markets continue to function smoothly. The central bank injected some $5.9bn into the banking system on 16 March in order to boost liquidity. The US Federal Reserve and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand announced out-of-cycle interest rate cuts on 16 March; US rates have been reduced to near zero and NZ rates have been slashed by 75 basis points to just 0.25 per cent.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, UNITED STATES. FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD, RESERVE BANK OF NEW ZEALAND

RBA may need $30b in bonds for a shot at QE, says Deutsche Bank

Original article by Matthew Cranston
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 4 : 10-Mar-20

Deutsche Bank economist Phil O’Donaghoe does not expect quantitative easing to be necessary in response to the coronavirus. He says another official interest rate cut in April and the federal government’s stimulus package should result in a 2019-20 Budget deficit of about 1.2 per cent of GDP. However, O’Donaghoe warns that if the Reserve Bank of Australia does resort to quantitative easing, it would need to purchase up to $30bn worth of bonds to generate the same macroeconomic stimulus as a rate cut of 25 basis points.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, DEUTSCHE BANK AG

Lower rates won’t help: AFIC boss

Original article by Cliona O’Dowd
The Australian – Page: 17 & 28 : 3-Mar-20

The Australian Financial Investment Company’s MD Mark Freeman argues that official interest rates are already at a historically low level, so further monetary policy easing is unlikely to stimulate the economy or stabilise financial markets. The Reserve Bank is widely tipped to reduce the cash rate on 3 March, and there is growing speculation that it could pursue quantitative easing later in the year. However, Freeman has questioned the merits of quantitative easing. He adds that the sharemarket’s recent pullback has created some good buying opportunities.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN FOUNDATION INVESTMENT COMPANY LIMITED – ASX AFI, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA

Economists push out QE timing after Lowe speech

Original article by Matthew Cranston
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 8 : 28-Nov-19

Westpac’s chief economist Bill Evans now expects the Reserve Bank of Australia to pursue quantitative easing in June 2020, having previously forecast that it would commence a bond-buying program in February. Other economists have also revised their timetables for QE after RBA governor Philip Lowe signalled that this option is unlikely to be pursued unless the cash rate falls to 0.25 per cent. Citigroup’s Josh Williamson has ruled out any move to QE in 2020.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, CITIGROUP PTY LTD, HSBC AUSTRALIA HOLDINGS PTY LTD

Two cuts left in RBA arsenal

Original article by Patrick Commins
The Australian – Page: 1 & 6 : 27-Nov-19

Reserve Bank of Australia governor Philip Lowe has used a speech in Sydney to state that conventional monetary policy remains effective and the central bank is unlikely to consider quantitative easing unless the cash rate falls to 0.25 per cent. He indicated that the RBA would buy government bonds if it opted for QE. Lowe also described negative interest rates as the only monetary policy tool that is "truly unconventional", and emphasised that negatives rates are unlikely in Australia.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY