Official Cash Rate


Official Cash Rate

The Official Cash Rate (OCR) is the interest rate paid by banks in the overnight money market in Australia and New Zealand. Through the regulated use of Exchange Settlement Accounts, a central bank is able to adjust the interest rates of a nation's economy. The OCR cannot be changed by transactions between financial institutions as this does not change the supply of money, only its location. Only transfers between the central bank and an institution can affect the cash rate.

As banks are made to settle all inter-bank transfers overnight, the central bank can regulate the rate paid for cash by the sale or buy back of bonds and other government issued securities. As the sale or purchase of bonds affects the supply of money, then the interest rate will change to reflect its availability. This system indirectly influences the term structure of interest rates in the whole economy. Changes to the official cash rate generally affect the rates on housing and other loans within a matter of days or weeks. Under the Australian system the Reserve Bank of Australia issues its dealing intentions at the start of each day, and banks and other financial institutions will act prior to the actual rate being achieved.

External links

* [http://www.rbnz.govt.nz/monpol/about/0072140.html What is the Official Cash Rate from Reserve Bank of New Zealand]


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