New Zealand postpones interest rate hike after detection of new coronavirus

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New Zealand Update

After the Covid-19 outbreak triggered a national lockdown, the Bank of New Zealand postponed its plan to raise interest rates on Wednesday.

Health officials said seven cases of highly infectious Delta strains have been infected. Found in Auckland In the past 24 hours. But they warned that there may already be 50 to 120 cases in the community, and it is important to identify them as soon as possible to control the outbreak.

The Reserve Bank of New Zealand has Broad reminder Become the first central bank in a developed country to raise interest rates during the pandemic. But its Monetary Policy Committee said on Wednesday that it will maintain interest rates at 0.25% due to the blockade.

Since the government lifted most of the social distancing restrictions last year after eliminating the spread of the virus in the community, New Zealand’s economy has rebounded.Some economists had predicted that the Bank of New Zealand would raise interest rates by 50 basis points in response to House price The annual inflation rate in July rose by 3.3%.

ANZ said that the New Zealand central bank’s rate hike depends on the government’s ability to contain the new crown virus and lift the blockade.

“We now expect to raise interest rates in October, November, February, May, and August next year, bringing the official cash rate to 1.5%. However, our forecasts are also highly dependent on the successful elimination of this epidemic,” ANZ Bank Said in a report.

Genome test links clusters in New Zealand’s largest city with rapidly spreading virus Sydney outbreak, Australia.

“Our case originated in Australia… We definitely look forward to more cases,” said New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

The Auckland outbreak is New Zealand’s first community-transmitted Covid case in the past six months.The country is one of the few countries that continues to pursue a strategy Eliminate the virus By closing borders and implementing blockades.

Wellington implemented a three-day national lockdown starting Wednesday morning to control the latest epidemic. Auckland faces a seven-day lockdown.

New Zealand’s setback highlights the lingering threat posed by the pandemic, which has delayed efforts to cancel the stimulus measures implemented last year to reduce costs.

The more communicative nature of the Delta variant also challenges previous countries Successfully suppressed Virus. On Wednesday, despite an eight-week lockdown, New South Wales, Australia, reported a record 633 daily cases of new coronary pneumonia.

Some economists believe that the Reserve Bank of Australia may postpone its plan to ease monetary stimulus from next month.

Robert Thompson, a macro interest rate strategist at Royal Bank of Canada, said: “Our basic assumption is still that the Bank of Australia will slightly cut interest rates at its September meeting, but we estimate that the possibility of a suspension has risen.”

Additional report by Tommy Stubbington in London

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