Ex-Reserve Bank economist takes top role at business school

A former Reserve Bank economist is settling into his new role as the University of Auckland business school's BNZ chair of finance. Professor David Mayes, former chief manager of the economics department at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand and head of the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research, throughout his career has advised central banks and financial regulators in 15 countries worldwide.

A former Reserve Bank economist is settling into his new role as the University of Auckland business school’s BNZ chair of finance.

Professor David Mayes, former chief manager of the economics department at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand and head of the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research, throughout his career has advised central banks and financial regulators in 15 countries worldwide.

As a member of the Joint Shadow Financial Regulatory Committee for Australia and New Zealand, Professor Mayes spent recent years trying to improve financial regulation and the handling of financial failures.

“Almost all financial woes of recent times have been caused by financial ignorance, some unintended, but ignorance none-the-less. My career has focused on addressing this issue.”

Professor Mayes, who worked offshore for more than a decade, said his main objective was to improve the financial literacy of New Zealanders.

“This initiative is timely as no one wants to see the distress caused by people losing their life savings in the collapse of the finance company sector happen again.

“Raising levels of financial literacy across the spectrum is a priority for BNZ. We are proud to support the nation’s knowledge growth from advanced analysis of the operations of financial institutions through to developing understanding at a grassroots level.”

Bank of New Zealand, which has invested $1.35 million over five years to establish the chair of finance at the business school, is working with the Retirement Commission to further raise levels of financial awareness in New Zealand.

Professor Mayes has published 36 books and more than 200 articles in international journals, chapters and reports.

His first public lecture, on June 22, will be on "Surviving the Next Financial Crisis," which will deal both with how to reduce the chance of future crises, and how their cost minimises. 

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