On the move in the New Zealand political economy this week:
Regulators launch urgent inquisition into big four Australian-owned banks, demanding results of internal inquiries into problems seen in Australia. Bernard Hickey introduces the full letter demanding results within 2 weeks.
Two of the country’s big four banks say proposed legislation to prevent foreign companies from gaming our tax system could inadvertently criminalise bank directors, Thomas Coughlan reports
Former Finance Minister Bill English has described the influence of Australia's big four banks as more pervasive in New Zealand than that of China.
Kerry McDonald, a former chair of the BNZ and former National Australia Bank director, argues the current system designed to protect depositors in New Zealand’s big four banks is fundamentally flawed. He cites weak local governance by both the banks' boards and the Reserve Bank, and an unfair system that penalises local savers in any crisis. Like the IMF, McDonald is calling for tougher Reserve Bank regulation and reform of protections for savers.
A clutch of fresh record highs emerged yesterday around the housing market.
For the convenience of email-avoiding subscribers and samplers, here's the email sent earlier on Friday.
For the convenience of email-avoiding subscribers and samplers, here's the email sent earlier on Thursday.
For the convenience of email subscribers, here's my weekend column, in which I argue EFTPOS is a national champion that saves NZ Inc hundreds of millions of dollars a year and should not be surrendered in the shift to contactless payments and mobile wallets.
BNZ Chief Economist Tony Alexander has led the debate around non-resident buying of homes in Auckland with his BNZ-REINZ survey of real estate agents' views and his call for Australian-style restrictions. The issue is shaping up as a big one for the September 20 election and now Alexander has raised the prospect of a greater surge of investment from China that could leave houses in Auckland empty. He suggested even Australian-style restrictions may not be enough to dampen house price growth.