News in brief: BNZ drops special rate

by NZ Adviser30 Mar 2016
BNZ has reduced its one-year special rate to 4.25%. 
The cut joins previous reductions the bank made last week across a range of its home loan products, including a drop in its two year fixed rate Classic special by 10 basis points from 4.49% to 4.39%.

“Our decisions regarding interest rates are based on a number of factors in a very competitive market,” said BNZ director of retail and marketing Craig Herbison. “Interest rates are currently at an historic low so it's a great time for customers to consider their options.” 

Kiwibank also cut its two-year special rate, down to 4.25% yesterday. 

Overseas buyers target city sites
Foreign investors spent $1.01 billion in six months on commercial properties including supermarkets, shopping malls, hotels and office space in New Zealand, the NZ Herald reports. 

Australians were the biggest spenders and sellers, at $844 million and $595 million respectively in the second half of last year, according to a report from international real estate company CBRE.

England, the United States and China were next in line as the most active in the overseas investment market. 

Reserve Bank consults on a crisis management regime for financial market infrastructures
The Reserve Bank has begun public consultation on a crisis management regime for systemically important financial market infrastructures (SIFMIs). The proposed regime forms the final part of proposals the Bank published in December 2015 for a new oversight regime for SIFMIs.

The proposed crisis management regime has two parts. First, SIFMIs would be required to maintain business continuity plans and recovery and wind-down plans. Second, the Reserve Bank and the FMA (joint regulators) could call on proposed new statutory powers when these plans are inadequate to manage a crisis.   

“FMIs generally operate reliably and effectively in New Zealand, and overseas experience shows us that the serious failure of a systemically important FMI is rare,” said Toby Fiennes, Head of Prudential Supervision. 

“However, it is important that we have the plans and tools in place to deal with the failure of a systemically important FMI, given the serious adverse effects this could have on the financial system. We welcome stakeholders’ feedback on the crisis management regime we are proposing.” 

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