13 Sep 2010

Reserve Bank not expected to raise OCR for a while

7:01 am on 13 September 2010

Economists expect the Reserve Bank to take a break from raising the benchmark interest rate, as confidence has been knocked by tepid demand and the effects of the Canterbury earthquake.

On Thursday, the central bank will review the cost of bank borrowing - the Official Cash Rate, or OCR - which currently stands at 3%.

House sales have been weak and retail spending lacklustre as households repay debt, while confidence has ebbed and overseas demand has eased.

The senior economist at BNZ, Craig Ebert, says the earthquake has cemented in interest rates remaining on hold, despite lingering inflation pressures and solid international commodity prices.