The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) will cut the board meetings it holds to determine interest rates from 11 a year to eight, Governor Philip Lowe has announced.
Lowe also announced he would hold a press conference after each interest rate meeting, and flagged a “significant program of cultural change” to make the organisation more inclusive.
The new changes are part of the RBA’s response to a recent independent review, which made 51 recommendations for change.
It comes amid speculation about whether Lowe will be replaced as Governor when his term expires later this year.
RBA Governors are appointed by the Federal Government. In an interview on ABC radio yesterday, Treasurer Jim Chalmers said he was still considering whether to make a change and had given the Opposition the opportunity to contribute.
Asked about his future yesterday, Lowe said he would be “honoured” to be re-appointed.
What is the RBA?
The RBA is Australia’s central bank. Its key responsibility is setting the ‘cash rate‘ – an interest rate it charges commercial banks for short-term loans.
This rate influences the cost of borrowing across the economy, so changes to the cash rate are often called changes to ‘interest rates’.
The RBA has raised interest rates several times since May last year in a bid to cut inflation (rising prices).