RBA Interest Rate Update: April 2022
It’s no surprise that the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) have once again held the official cash rate at 0.1%.
Globally, inflation is rapidly rising. The continuing war in Ukraine is impacting energy prices around the world and in turn inflation rates are rising. In the U.S. inflation reached 7.9% in February 2022 – the highest since 1982, while the Eurozone saw a 1.6% increase to 7.5% in March 2022. The UK is not far behind with inflation sitting at 6.2% for February 2022.
Here in Australia, the official inflation rate sits at 3.5% but everyday items are getting more expensive. The recent spate of natural disasters in Australia, widespread flooding along the east coast and the Wooroloo bushfires in WA, means that despite the RBA keeping the cash rate steady for April 2022, it’s likely that many Australians will be feeling the squeeze on their household budgets.
The Federal Government looks to be gearing up for the election with the recent Federal Budget update revealing a slew of one-off cash incentives for Australian households. Here’s a roundup of the latest finance announcements.
Cash rate on hold
Philip Lowe, RBA Governor announced today the cash rate is being held at a record low for the 17th consecutive month.
In the statement today, the RBA commented “The Australian economy remains resilient and spending is picking up following the Omicron setback.”
Although it’s clear that inflation will be a consideration over the coming months. “Inflation has increased in Australia, but it remains lower than in many other countries. Higher prices for petrol and other commodities will result in a further lift in inflation over coming quarters.”
If you are considering refinancing your mortgage there are still some competitive rates available with some as low as 1.99%. Take a look at the latest offers.
Households feeling the squeeze
The Federal Government’s Budget offered some relief for families with a temporary 50% cut to the fuel excise. This was one of the main headlines from the Bugdet announcement last week.
Although fuel has dropped below $1.80 a litre in most areas it’s still worth shopping around. If you live in NSW, the state government’s Fuelcheck website or app can help you find the lowest petrol price in your area. If you are looking to save on your home energy bills check out these offers.
There are still a number of disaster relief payments available for those who meet the criteria. Centrelink has a Payment and Service finder to help individuals work out what payments they may be eligible for.
According to the latest employment figures, the unemployment rate stands at 4% which is the lowest it’s been since August 2008. With more people participating in the Australian workforce, business commentators are concerned that there will be pressure on employers to lift wages in the face of continuing labour shortages.
Although a wage rise sounds great for those who are employed, it may also drive up the cost of goods and services. So the balancing act continues for the RBA and the Federal Government.
No matter what the national economy is up to, you can keep an eye on what’s happening on your credit file. Simply jump into the Credit Savvy dashboard now and compare how your score is tracking to other Australians.