Innovation key to shaping Bank’s past and future

Release date
29 September 2016

The Reserve Bank's Annual Report 2015-16 demonstrates the Bank's commitment to innovation as it continues to promote a sound and dynamic monetary and financial system, Governor Graeme Wheeler said today.

Mr Wheeler said the Reserve Bank's activities affect New Zealanders' lives in many ways, including: supplying the currency they use, making decisions on the Official Cash Rate that affect their borrowing costs and return on savings; providing services to allow financial institutions to settle payments between one another, as well as regulating banks, finance companies and insurers.

"This Annual Report provides information on progress across our various statutory functions, as well as work underway to further enhance the Bank's capacity to respond to the challenging environment.” Features of the 2015-16 financial year included:

  • The Bank ensured that monetary policy was consistent with the Reserve Bank Act and Policy Targets Agreement.
  • The new Series 7 Banknotes were released into circulation, with the $5 note winning a prestigious international banknote design award.
  • The Prudential Supervision department undertook a review of bank prudential regulation, which resulted in consultations on an enhanced disclosure framework and greater clarity around the policy-making process.
  • The Macro-Financial and Prudential Supervision departments worked with banks on the development of a comprehensive stress-testing framework.
  • Considerable work was undertaken on the new loan-to-value restrictions which commence on 1 October. Preliminary work was also undertaken on debt-to-income ratios.
  • The Bank’s financial management systems architecture was finalised and is being implemented.
  • Significant progress was made with major projects to replace and improve the Bank’s payments and settlement systems.
  • The Bank further developed its high-performance framework, as well as leadership and management competencies.
  • The Bank spent a net $54.1 million on activities covered by its Funding Agreement, made a surplus of $52 million, and paid a $140 million dividend to the Crown.

The Annual Report features a section that highlights some of the innovative security features incorporated in the Series 7 Brighter Money banknotes. It also includes an historical look at how innovation has helped to shape Bank processes and systems through the years.

The Bank's Annual Report is available as both an online, interactive document at annualreport.rbnz.govt.nz and as a downloadable PDF (PDF 5.28MB).

Media contact
Naomi Mitchell
External Communications Adviser
Ph 09 366 2643 or 027 294 3900
Email: naomi.mitchell@rbnz.govt.nz