12 Oct 2010

Reserve Bank pays $335m dividend to Government

12:15 pm on 12 October 2010

The Reserve Bank of New Zealand has paid a $335 million dividend to the Government despite posting a loss in the past financial year.

The high New Zealand dollar led to a $1 billion reversal in the central bank's books for the year to June.

In year to June 2009, the Reserve Bank paid a $630 million dividend to the Government after a $906 million profit.

That was due to a rise in the value in New Zealand dollar terms of its foreign currency reserves as the Kiwi sank.

The Kiwi's subsequent rise has eaten into the value of the bank's near $3 billion in unhedged reserves.

A spokesperson says the central bank was able to pay a dividend to the Government despite a $111 million loss this year, thanks to making some profits from selling foreign exchange during the year.

The dividend also helped reduce the size of its balance sheet, which swelled to $30 billion during the financial crisis.