RBA Won’t Act On House Prices

RBA governor Phillip Lowe has said the Reserve Bank is not responsible for targeting house prices, after questions were raised about the creation of a boom market against the backdrop of low interest rates.

“The RBA does not, and should not, target housing prices – instead, our focus is on the lending that is used to purchase housing,” Phillip Lowe said in front of parliament’s standing committee on economics.

Questioned about the point at which the RBA will act to prevent the creation of “unsustainable prices”, Lowe said the issue for the central bank would be if people didn’t borrow sensibly.

“We shouldn’t try to control asset prices,” he said. “What we can influence is how much borrowing happens on the back of those rising prices. We would be concerned if there were to be a deterioration in these standards, but there are few signs of this at the moment.”

Last week, the RBA confirmed that it will keep the cash rate at 0.1% and revealed that the interest rate will likely remain at a record low until 2024 at least.