4 February 2018
Mr John Fraser
Secretary to the Treasury
Parkes ACT 2600
Dear Mr Fraser,
The following is for your consideration.
Could you please outline the options available to members of the Australian public where the Australian Government fails to comply with legislation it is responsible to uphold?
To provide an example, the Department of Treasury has a responsibility to administer the Reserve Bank Act 1959.
Section 9, part (2) of the above act states in part, “…ensure that the monetary and banking policy of the Bank is directed to the greatest advantage of the people of Australia…”
Irrespective of whether the RBA board believe they comply with the above part of the act, my question is, what options are available to members of the Australian public who believe the RBA is not setting monetary policy to the greatest benefit of the people of Australia? In particular, with respect to facilitating high levels of home ownership.
I have previously written to the RBA and made an FOI request to both the RBA and Treasury.
If the RBA continues to set interest rates so as to benefit those who already own residential property at the expense of those who do not, but who wish to do so, do renters then need to start a class action in the High Court against the RBA or Treasury before the RBA and Treasury start taking citizens rights to own freehold property seriously?
The RBA FOI documents on the housing component of the CPI can be viewed here. The release date is 6 November 2017.
The Treasury FOI documents on the housing component of the CPI can be viewed here. The release date is 25 January 2018. Numerous documents were prevented from being released, partly because some of the documents contained advice to Ministers that is considered “current“.
The exchange with the RBA on house price inflation and the housing component of the CPI series published by the ABS can be viewed here.
Dear Mr Collett
Thank you for your letter dated 4 February 2018.
The Reserve Bank of Australia is an independent central bank. It is held to the highest standards and is accountable to the Parliament for its actions. As you note, the Reserve Bank’s responsibilities are set out in the Reserve Bank Act 1959. They are further elaborated in the Statement on the Conduct of Monetary Policy agreed with the Australian Government.
The duty of the Reserve Bank Board is to set monetary policy in pursuit of price stability for the welfare of the people of Australia as a whole. The Board takes into account developments in the domestic and international economy and financial markets, including housing prices, in its policy deliberations.
John A. Fraser