16 Jun 2009

Inquiry into bank rates up to Parliament - English

3:45 pm on 16 June 2009

The Minister of Finance's office says it is up to Parliament to decide whether there should be a select committee inquiry into banks.

The Prime Minister on Monday appeared to rule out a parliamentary inquiry into interest rates charged by the banks.

A spokesperson for Finance Minister Bill English says the Government's prime concern is ensuring the stability of the banking system. However, he says it is up to Parliament's Finance and Expenditure Select Committee to decide whether to set up an inquiry into bank interest rates.

The select committee last week released a report criticising high interest rates charged by banks on short-term lending. Some members of the committee have indicated they want an inquiry into the issue.