Markets Monthly: Interest rates climb and shares fall over December

  • Sharemarkets were weak both here and abroad in December and were down significantly over 2022, except for the UK’s FTSE which posted a modest 1% gain over the year
  • The Bank of Japan surprised global markets by adjusting its yield curve control program. The Bank widened the target on the 10-year JGB yield from 0.0% +/-25bp to 0% +/-50bp. Governor Kuroda emphasised the tweak to the program was to improve market functionality. Nevertheless, markets continued to speculate the Bank would further unwind its monetary stimulus. The Bank of Japan’s policy rate remained at -0.1%
  • The US FOMC, Bank of England and European Central bank all delivered 0.5% hikes in December and retain tightening biases. The Reserve Bank of Australia delivered a 0.25% hike at its meetings in December but appears closer to the end of its tightening cycle than other central banks

Contact us

Chris Tennent-Brown

ASB Wealth Senior Economist

Chris has worked as an economist for ASB and Commonwealth Bank of Australia in Sydney since 2005. His work has involved monitoring and forecasting trends in the New Zealand economy, with a focus on drawing implications for financial markets and investments. Chris is passionate about savings issues, and much of his current work is focussed on broadening peoples understanding of investments. Chris obtained a Bachelor of Commerce at Auckland University, majoring in Economics, and prior to joining ASB worked in the funds management industry for Bankers Trust and BT Funds Management. With over 20 years' experience in finance, Chris has also spent several years farming, and was a New Zealand representative cyclist. When not at work, Chris likes to travel, cycle, and spend time with his family and numerous pets.

Nick Tuffley

ASB Chief Economist

Since starting out in 1997 as an economist, it's fair to say Nick has seen a few hair-raising moments over the years, including the Asian Financial Crisis and the Global Financial Crisis.

One of Nick's strengths is his ability to communicate complex ideas in a readily understandable and entertaining way.  He thrives on helping people understand the economic environment to help enrich the quality of their business or personal life. He’s proud to lead a team that has won two Forecast Accuracy Awards from Consensus Economics, and has a strong track record with their Official Cash Rate and dairy price forecasts. 

Nick grew up in Christchurch and graduated with a Master of Commerce degree from the University of Canterbury.  He learned his economic ropes at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand before a long stint as a Senior Economist at Westpac, and joined ASB as Chief Economist in 2007.

Other reports