A majority of Australians expect the Reserve Bank to keep rates on hold until 2012, new research has revealed.
According to a new survey by Loan Market Group, 40 per cent of respondents believe the RBA will keep rates on hold at 4.75 per cent for the rest of 2011, while another 20 per cent believe the Board may actually cut rates before the year is out.
Twenty-four per cent believe there will be one rate increase in 2011, while another 16 per cent predict two rises.
“The interest rate landscape is an unpredictable one but with sluggish economic numbers across the board and a recent nose-dive in consumer confidence, a majority of Australians are not expecting any more rate rises during 2011,” Loan Market Group spokesperson Paul Smith said.
“This is a big change from just a few months ago when most economists were forecasting at least one or perhaps two increases by the RBA before the end of the year. Now with an emerging debt crisis in Europe and a soft domestic economy, we could see rates drop before Christmas.”