The author has been described by News Ltd as an "iconoclast", "Svengali", a pollie's "economist muse", and "pungently accurate". Fairfax says he is a "Renaissance man" and "one of Australia’s most respected analysts." Stephen Koukoulas concludes that he is "85% right", and "would make a great Opposition leader." Terry McCrann claims the author thinks "‘nuance’ is a trendy village in the south of France", but can be "scintillating" when he thinks "clearly". The ACTU reckons he’s "an enigma wrapped in a Bloomberg terminal, wrapped in some apparently well-honed abs."

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Debelle: RBA will not opine on what acceptable bank returns are--but community can

More sensible levity from the RBA's Guy Debelle:

"I mean, that’s not something we have responsibility for. We’re not after how the banks set their prices. We obviously take that into account in the setting of monetary policy. It’s a valid enough discussion for the community to have, and the community is having that discussion. As I said, I think our main contribution to that is to at least provide some common ground for that discussion to happen – on which to happen, by providing information about what our estimate is of what’s happening for funding and what our estimate is of what’s happening to lending rates. Obviously, the banks publish every quarter what’s happening to their margins, so you see the net outcome of that. And that’s a valid enough discussion for the community to be having, as to whether those  margins are appropriate or not, but it’s not something that we have any sort of responsibility for. As I said, the Board’s decision takes into account what’s happening to the overall structure of lending rates in its determinations each month but, it’s a discussion for the community to have as to what’s the appropriate margin or, more generally, what’s the appropriate profitability for the banking system? Not ours."