Reserve Bank boss Philip Lowe will face a barrage of questioning this week as parliamentarians turn up the heat on the under siege governor.
Dr Lowe is listed to appear before a senate estimates hearing on Wednesday, followed by a House committee on Friday.
He expected to be probed over the central bank’s plans to deliver further interest rate rises and the impact of nine consecutive hikes since May.
NAB economist Taylor Nugent said the bank’s “hawkish” statement of monetary policy, released last week, was sure to be on the agenda.
“With heightened press coverage of Lowe’s recent approach to communication that is sure to be a focus of questioning,” he said.
“Though we will be looking for comments around the RBA is balancing the risks of subpar growth/recession versus getting inflation back to target and what the bar is to pausing the hike cycle.”
Dr Lowe has come under fire for saying as late as November 2021 that the bank was likely to hold the cash rate steady at record low rates.
Since May last year, it has rapidly raised rates from 0.1 per cent to 3.35 per cent in a bid to curb skyrocketing inflation.
He later apologised to Australians who may now regret taking out a home loan off the back of the RBA’s guidance.
The under siege governor is also likely to be grilled over reports he gave a private briefing to big banks at a lunch hosted by investment bank Barrenjoey last week.
Government Services Minister Bill Shorten stressed that while he understood people’s “frustration” with Dr Lowe, he did not believe there was anything “untoward” about the briefing.
Former RBA board member John Edwards said the meeting was common practice and questioned the “personal element” of the attacks on Dr Lowe.
“There’s certainly a more personal element (to the criticism) I think this time than before,” he told ABC Radio.
“Paradoxically, it started when, as a criticism that prior to the Covid pandemic … the RBA kept rates too high.”
On Sunday, Treasurer Jim Chalmers repeatedly ducked questions about Dr Lowe’s future when his term expires in September.
A report from the independent panel tasked with reviewing the central bank’s performance is set to hand back its report by March 31.
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