Reserve Bank of New Zealand
At the start of June, KangaNews and Westpac brought together New Zealand’s biggest government-sector issuers in Wellington to discuss the path of their market from the depths of the crisis back to functionality, the new challenges of 2021 and the outlook for a raft of factors – including sustainable-finance evolution, inflation-linked issuance and the long-dated market.
The KangaNews Debt Capital Markets Summit 2021 virtual event took place on 9 June, ahead of another important period for the Australian economy and market’s emergence from the COVID-19 crisis. Discussions throughout the day reiterated the importance of Reserve Bank of Australia policy settings for determining the path of both.
The Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s Monetary Policy Committee decided on 14 July to halt its large-scale asset purchase programme before the end of the month due to the trajectory of New Zealand’s recovery from COVID-19. New Zealand is ahead of the developed world in its tightening cycle but analysts believe the market and economy is ready for this withdrawal of stimulus.
In 2020, KangaNews launched its Women in Capital Markets Yearbook with a focus on amplifying female voices in the Australian market. The publication received widespread positive response, including requests from New Zealand to bring a similar project to the other side of the Tasman Sea. On 8 March this year – International Women’s Day – KangaNews hosted its first roundtable discussion exclusively featuring female leaders in the New Zealand debt market. The event was not just to discuss gender diversity but to provide a forum for their voices at a key moment of market development.
Updates in early 2021 confirm that there will be no reprieve for the international IBOR complex and only a temporary stay of execution for some specific rates. Market participants say Australasia – where rates based on bank bills will continue to exist, at least for the time being – is still insufficiently engaged with the transition process, including in the context of all-important cross-currency swaps.
Housing affordability has been a critical issue in New Zealand for some time but a price explosion in 2020 has heightened the national focus. The government has announced a suite of policies to tackle the issue but efforts to press gang monetary and regulatory policy into service have run into resistance.