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News > New Zealand

New Zealand Evaluates Interest Rate Risk After SV Bank Collapse

  • Bank in New Zealand. May, 1, 2023.

    Bank in New Zealand. May, 1, 2023. | Photo: Twitter/@FXStreetNews

Published 1 May 2023

"...New Zealand banks have relatively little interest rate risk, said the statement..."

The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) has been evaluating the interest rate risk in the banking system following Silicon Valley Bank's collapse.


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"The recent high-profile collapse of Silicon Valley Bank in the United States has highlighted the importance of effectively managing interest rate risk, especially in a rising interest rate environment," an RBNZ statement said on Monday.

The variability in the worth of a bank's assets and liabilities due to variations in interest rates results in interest rate risk. According to the statement, the situation possesses the potential to render banks vulnerable to incurring losses and adversely affect their capital positions.

"New Zealand banks have relatively little interest rate risk," said the statement, claiming that they are capable of mitigating this exposure by aligning the repricing schedule of its assets and liabilities and employing financial instruments to hedge variances.

According to the statement, New Zealand banks are required to maintain adequate capital reserves to mitigate any probable losses stemming from residual interest rate risk. Therefore, the banks are motivated to exercise prudent risk management practices.

"This is important as Silicon Valley Bank highlights how quickly concerns over risk management can undermine depositor confidence in an entity and the banking system as a whole," RBNZ said, adding that this scenario has the potential to result in amplified deposit outflows, and in severe circumstances, may substantiate a resurgence of a bank run.

Further investigation into this matter will be conducted and presented in an upcoming publication, in the Financial Stability Report, which is scheduled to be published on Wednesday.

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