Borrowers spared cash rate hike as RBA stays on hold at 4.1 per cent

Borrowers have been granted another month of interest rate relief, with the Reserve Bank leaving the official cash rate untouched at 4.1 per cent.

The second consecutive month on hold follows four percentage points of increases that have heaped pressure on borrowers.

Like many other central banks around the world, the RBA has been trying to unseat high inflation with a series of interest rate hikes.

Consumer prices are still growing but more slowly, with inflation pulling back to six per cent annual growth through to June from seven per cent in March.

Despite passing its peak, inflation remains well above the RBA’s two-to-three per cent target range.

But RBA governor Philip Lowe has kept further tightening on the cards.

“Some further tightening of monetary policy may be required to ensure that inflation returns to target in a reasonable timeframe, but that will depend upon the data and the evolving assessment of risks,” Dr Lowe said in a statement on Tuesday.

“The board remains resolute in its determination to return inflation to target and will do what is necessary to achieve that.”

For mortgage holders, the interest rate rises have been pushing up their monthly repayments.

RateCity analysis has the average borrower with a $500,000 mortgage stumping up well over $1100 extra toward their loan compared to what they were paying before interest rates started going up.

The past few interest rate decisions have been close as the RBA inches towards the end of its tightening cycle, with economists once again divided ahead of the August call.

The convincing slowdown in inflation and subdued retail numbers bolstered the case for another pause, whereas strength in the jobs market and sticky services price pressures were frequently cited by those tipping a hike.


Poppy Johnston
(Australian Associated Press)


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