Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA)

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) is Australia’s central bank. It conducts monetary policy, works to maintain a strong financial system and issues the nation’s currency. As well as being a policy-making body, the Reserve Bank provides selected banking and registry services to a range of Australian government agencies and to a number of overseas central banks and official institutions. It also manages Australia's gold and foreign exchange reserves.

The Bank is a statutory authority, established by an Act of Parliament being the Reserve Bank Act 1959, which gives it specific powers and obligations. In terms of the Act, there are two Boards: the Reserve Bank Board and the Payments System Board.

As written in the Act:
“It is the duty of the Reserve Bank Board, within the limits of its powers, to ensure that the monetary and banking policy of the Bank is directed to the greatest advantage of the people of Australia and that the powers of the Bank ... are exercised in such a manner as, in the opinion of the Reserve Bank Board, will best contribute to:

  • the stability of the currency of Australia;
  • the maintenance of full employment in Australia; and
  • the economic prosperity and welfare of the people of Australia.”

The Reserve Bank Board has to inform the Government, from time to time, of the Bank's monetary and banking policy.