12 Oct 2010

Reserve Bank will suffer more losses says strategist

9:34 pm on 12 October 2010

A currency expert is predicting further losses for the Reserve Bank after a billion-dollar turnaround in its books due to the high New Zealand dollar.

But the central bank says more losses wouldn't preclude continuing windfall dividends for the Government.

The Reserve Bank posted a $906 million profit in 2009 as the New Zealand dollar sank and the value of its foreign currency reserves rose.

The rise in the Kiwi since then wiped out those gains and resulted in a $111 million loss this year.

Currency strategist Derek Rankin is predicting the dollar value of the central bank's nearly $3 billion foreign reserves to fall as the Kiwi rises further.

But further losses might not stop the Reserve Bank paying more dividends to the Government.

A spokesperson for the bank says it paid a $335 million dividend this year to reduce the size of its balance sheet.