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21.05.2019 14:00

Westpac now sees the RBA cutting rates in June

"Westpac has revised the forecast it released on February 21 that the RBA would cut the cash rate in August and November to June and August. We then expect the cash rate to remain on hold through 2020", Westpac chief economist Bill Evans said.

"This change in forecast reflects the lift in the unemployment rate for April from 5.1% to 5.2% and the confirmation from the Governor that the Board would be closely following developments in the labour  market with the primary focus on the unemployment rate. Recall that the current forecast for the unemployment rate is 5% to end 2020, (falling to 4.75% by June 2021), based on market pricing, which in the May Board Minutes is assessed as “the cash rate was expected to be lowered by 25 basis points within the next three months and again by the end of 2019”. Other aspects of the Bank’s current forecasts also are underwhelming despite the assumption around lower rates – 2.6% growth in 2019; 1.75% trimmed mean inflation in 2019; and 5% unemployment rate by end 2019. With the June rate cut virtually locked in the issue is why we expect a follow up move in August", Evans said.


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