New Reserve Bank Governor Michelle Bullock has been urged to act with sensitivity and be aware of the impact on business in guiding the RBA on future interest rate decisions.

National Retail Association CEO Greg Griffith said the new Governor is walking into the job at a tough time but urged Ms. Bullock to learn from the mistakes of the past and consider the impact future rate pain would have on small to medium-sized businesses.

“Since the RBA started lifting the cash rate in May last year, there have been 12 interest rate rises, totalling a combined 4 percent. As many have said, this is a case of too much, too late,’’ Mr Griffith said.

“Our sector, the largest employer of retail workers in the country, is asking the new Governor to consider the impact 12 previous successive rate rises is having on business right now, rather than months down the track when economic indicators come in,’’ Mr. Griffith said.

“We would urge the Governor to learn from the lessons of the past and not act too late in putting the brakes on this policy direction.’’

Mr Griffith said the continued pressure from interest rate rises is putting many businesses and households with mortgages under pressure but those households without mortgages are not feeling this pain.

“The Governor needs to look at multiple indicators in the economy and make her decision carefully but we urge her to think clearly about the impact of rate rises and weigh this against their efficacy,’’ he said.

“The true story of retail sales figures reveals a more nuanced picture where some people and major drivers of the economy are feeling the pressure, while some are not.’’

The National Retail Association is the voice of modern retail, representing more than 60,000 stores across Australia.  It has been serving businesses in the retail and fast-food sectors for close to 100 years.

For more information, contact the National Retail Association media unit at or 0467 792 013.