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, February 8, 2012

New RBA Board Member is Self-Described "Dove"

Does not augur well for the Aussie central bank's inflation-target. Bloomberg reports:

Feb. 8 (Bloomberg) -- Incoming Australian central bank board member Heather Ridout aims to bring more attention to the nation’s overvalued exchange rate as she joins the policy debate amid deliberations on lowering interest rates.

Ridout will bring the perspective of the country’s manufacturers to the Reserve Bank of Australia, which unexpectedly left its benchmark rate at 4.25 percent yesterday. She will also boost its diversity, becoming the fourth woman to serve on the 52-year-old board.

“I’m a growth girl, but I’m not a stupid one,” Ridout said. “Sometimes we underestimate our capacity for growth in this country,” she said, adding Australia had been “quite conservative” on the issue.

Asked if she was a so-called dove, the word used to describe a policy maker who leans toward economic growth over fighting inflation, Ridout agreed she is.

“The market’s perception of her is that she is going to be a voice for the manufacturing industry,” said Sean Keane, an analyst in Auckland at financial advisory group Triple T Consulting and a former head of Asia-Pacific rates trading at Credit Suisse Group AG. “The market will expect that she’ll certainly argue against interest-rate hikes and argue for a more dovish policy stance.”