Foreign exchange market, exchange rate developments, and international reserves 2018

The króna depreciated by 6.4% in 2018, and turnover in the interbank foreign currency market contracted sharply year-on-year. In H2/2018, the Central Bank sold currency in the interbank market three times, with the aim of mitigating fluctuations in the exchange rate of the króna. The exchange rate was relatively stable in the first eight months of the year, and turnover was limited. The market grew turbulent in the autumn, partly because of uncertainty in the air transport sector, and the currency weakened. In December, the exchange rate rose again after a relatively sharp decline since the beginning of September. The Central Bank then bought currency in the interbank market for the first time in more than a year. The international reserves amounted to 736 b.kr. at the year-end, or 26% of GDP.


Seminar: Economic Crisis in Nordic and Baltic Countries

Seminar introducing a new book: The Economic Crisis and its Aftermath in the Nordic and Baltic Countries - Do As We Say and Not As We Do. The seminar will take place at the Central Bank of Iceland on Wednesday 16 January at 15:00 in the meeting room Sölvhóll. Speaker: Hilmar Þór Hilmarsson, professor at the University of Akureyri. The seminar will be in English.


Central Bank of Iceland receives equal pay certification

Yesterday the Central Bank of Iceland received formal equal pay certification in recognition of its wage structure, which fulfils the requirements of the equal pay certification standard ÍST 85:2012. The formal assessment of the Bank’s equal pay system was concluded in December 2018. The assessment was carried out by BSI Iceland, an accredited representative of the British Standards Institution. Two assessments were carried out in order to determine whether all of the requirements of the ÍST 85:2012 standard were satisfied in the Bank’s equal pay system. The Bank passed both assessments without reservations and has now received formal equal pay certification.


Changed publication time of statistics on Central Bank website

Effective 1 January 2019, the Central Bank of Iceland will publish its statistics at 9:00 hrs. instead of the previous 16:00 hrs. The first publication at the new time will take place on Monday 7 January 2019 at 9:00 hrs. The Bank has published statistics at 16:00 hrs. ever since it began such publications. With increased use of web-based media and social media that publish news 24 hours a day, it is considered more appropriate to publish statistics earlier in the day. The Central Bank is a participant in the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) publication standard. Among other things, the IMF standard assumes that statistics are published at predetermined times. As a result, the Central Bank sets its publication dates one year in advance.


Publication of MPC members’ votes and report on monetary policy framework proposals

The Central Bank of Iceland Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) has amended its procedures so that, beginning with the first MPC meeting of 2019, each member’s vote will be specified in the minutes of the meeting concerned. Until now, members’ votes have been published once a year, in the following year’s Annual Report. This change in procedure has been adopted in response to one of the proposals from the task force appointed by the Prime Minister’s Office to review the monetary policy framework. The task force’s report was published on 5 June 2018. The change in procedure is an element in increasing transparency about the decisions taken by the MPC.