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Reserve Bank reveals Monetary Policy Challenge 2019 finalists

The Reserve Bank’s new format Monetary Policy Challenge is shaping up to be an exciting competition, with six schools progressing to the final round of the competition.

The six teams who have made it through to the finals of the 2019 Monetary Policy Challenge are Auckland Grammar School, Christchurch Girls’ High School, King’s College, Kristin School, Lynfield College, and Wellington Girls’ College. Auckland Grammar School was last year’s winning team while King’s College and Kristin School were also winners in previous years.


An updated format has been introduced to the challenge this year. In the first round of the competition, each team was required to submit a video presentation of their group delivering their Monetary Policy Statement and their Official Cash Rate (OCR) decision. Thirty two teams from across New Zealand participated in this year’s competition.

Now on its 18th year, the Monetary Policy Challenge is designed to expand students’ understanding of monetary policy. It gives them an opportunity to think like economists and work together like members of the Monetary Policy Committee in assessing economic conditions and recommending what the OCR should be. The competition is open to all New Zealand secondary school senior economics students and contributes towards NCEA achievement standards.

Reserve Bank economists, who judged the entries, were impressed with the calibre of the presentations and the teams’ understanding of critical issues influencing the economy.

“Selecting the top six teams was difficult with all the teams producing exceptional work—both in their video presentations and their written analyses. We were impressed by the number of schools that recognised the new monetary policy mandate and reflected this in their entries. We’re also pleased with the broad range of factors teams considered when making their decisions,” Reserve Bank economists Jamie Culling and Evelyn Truong said.

The six finalists will compete in the national finals next month which will be held via video conferencing.

“We look forward to seeing the top teams justify their decision and apply economic theory to real life situations during the presentations and questions and answers.”

The winning team will visit the Reserve Bank in August to attend the Monetary Policy Statement media conference. They will also receive $2500 cash prize for their school and $500 for each team member.