WELLINGTON, May 8 (Reuters) - The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) cut its benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points to a record low of 1.50 percent on Wednesday, as it looks to support a cooling economy and counter global uncertainties.
“Global economic growth has slowed since 2018, easing demand for New Zealand’s goods and services,” the RBNZ’s monetary policy committee said in a statement accompanying its rates decision.
“A lower OCR (Official Cash Rate) is necessary to support the outlook for employment and inflation consistent with its (the RBNZ’s) policy remit.”
The OCR had been unchanged since November 2016 and a small majority of economists in a Reuters poll had expected the RBNZ to cut interest rates.
The New Zealand dollar tumbled to a six-month low of $0.6525 from $0.6600 after the announcement. (Reporting by Praveen Menon and Charlotte Greenfield; editing by Sam Holmes)