Arthur Grimes

Arthur Grimes

Contact details

Other positions


  • PhD, Economics, London School of Economics, 1987
  • MSc (Dist), Economics, London School of Economics, 1985
  • BSocSc. Hons (first class), Economics, University of Waikato, 1978


Dr Arthur Grimes is a Senior Fellow at Motu Economic and Public Policy Research Trust, Adjunct Professor of Economics at Victoria University of Wellington and Honorary Professor of Economics at University of Waikato. He is a research economist, with strong links to public policy. He was Reserve Bank of New Zealand Chairman from 2003-2013, where he was previously Chief Economist and a principal architect of inflation targeting. He has worked in the private sector as Chief Executive of Southpac Investment Management Limited and as Chief Economist of the National Bank of New Zealand.  Currently, he is a board member of the Financial Markets Authority and he chairs the Hugo Group strategy sessions.  

Current research interests focus on the economics of wellbeing, urban economics (including housing and infrastructure), and central banking (including currency union). He has written several books (including a history of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand) and has published papers in major journals on topics related to economic reform, economics of wellbeing, monetary and exchange rate policies, and urban economics.

Dr Grimes is currently President of the New Zealand Association of Economists and Co-Editor of New Zealand Economic Papers. In 2005, he was awarded the NZIER Economics Award recognising excellence in areas of economics that relate to New Zealand's economic welfare. The award citation included his development of inflation targeting and his research into a potential ANZAC dollar (common currency with Australia). In 2013, he was awarded the NZ-UK Link Visiting Professorship to the University of London. He is also a trustee of the Wellington Jazz & Music Festival Trust and plays saxophone and harmonica in City Jazz.


Dr Grimes teaches GOVT 521 (Economics and Policy) which is a core course for the MPP and MPM degrees. He is available to supervise postgraduate students, and currently supervises an honours student in the School of Economics and Finance.

Contribution to courses in 2016:

GOVT 521 – Economics and Policy

Selected publications

Books (authored)

  • John Singleton, Arthur Grimes, Gary Hawke & Frank Holmes. 2006. Innovation in Central Banking: A History of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, Auckland: Auckland University Press
  • Arthur Grimes, Frank Holmes and Roger Bowden. 2000. An ANZAC Dollar: Currency Union and Business Development, Wellington: Institute of Policy Studies

Books (edited)

  • Arthur Grimes, Lydia Wevers & Ginny Sullivan (eds). 2002. States of Mind: Australia and New Zealand 1901-2001, Wellington: Institute of Policy Studies
  • Arthur Grimes, Alan Jones, Roger Proctor & Grant Scobie (eds). 2001. Economics for Policy: Expanding the Boundaries – Essays by Peter Gorringe, Wellington: Institute of Policy Studies
  • Principal Editor. 1992. Monetary Policy & the New Zealand Financial System (3rd ed). Wellington: Reserve Bank of New Zealand

Refereed journal articles

  • Grimes, Arthur, Eyal Apatov, Larissa Lutchman and Anna Robinson. 2016. “Eighty Years of Urban Development in New Zealand: Impacts of Economic and Natural Factors”, New Zealand Economic Papers, 50(3), forthcoming.
  • Grimes, Arthur, Nick Preval, Chris Young, Richard Arnold, Tim Denne, Philippa Howden-Chapman, Lucy Telfar-Barnard. 2016. "Does Retrofitted Insulation Reduce Household Energy Use? Theory and Practice", The Energy Journal, 37(4), forthcoming,
  • Grimes, Arthur, Judd Ormsby, Anna Robinson, Siu Yuat Wong. 2016. “Subjective Wellbeing Impacts of National and Subnational Fiscal Policies”. REGION (European Regional Science Association), 3(1), 43-69.
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2015. “Recent Quantitative Approaches to Measuring Wellbeing in New Zealand”. New Zealand Sociology 30(3), 112-120.
  • Fabling, Richard & Arthur Grimes. 2015. “Over the Hedge: Do Exporters Practice Selective Hedging?”, Journal of Futures Markets, 35(4), 321–338.
  • Grimes, Arthur & Sean Hyland. 2015. “Housing Markets and the Global Financial Crisis: The Complex Dynamics of a Credit Shock”, Contemporary Economic Policy, 33(2), 315-333.
  • Fabling, Richard & Arthur Grimes. 2014. “The ‘Suite’ Smell of Success: Personnel Practices and Firm Performance”, Industrial and Labor Relations Review, 67(4), 1095-1126.
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2014. “‘Responsibility and Accountability in the Financial Sector”, Company Lawyer, 35(2), 42-47.
  • Bergstrom, Katy, Arthur Grimes & Stephen Stillman. 2014. “Does Selling State Silver Generate Private Gold? Neighbourhood Impacts of State House Sales”, Urban Studies, 51(6), 1257-1273.
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2013. “Monetary Policy and Economic Imbalances: An Ethnographic Examination of Central Bank Rituals”, Journal of Economic Surveys, 27(4), 634-640.
  • Matthew Roskruge, Arthur Grimes, Philip McCann & Jacques Poot. 2013. “Homeownership, Social Capital and Satisfaction with Local Government”, Urban Studies, 50(12), 2517-2534.
  • Grimes, Arthur & Chris Young. 2013. “Spatial Effects of Urban Rail Upgrades”, Journal of Transport Geography, 30, 1-6.
  • Fabling, Richard, Arthur Grimes & Lynda Sanderson. 2013. “Any Port in a Storm: Impacts of New Port Infrastructure on Exporter Behaviour", Transportation Research E, 49(1)), 33-47.
  • Grimes, Arthur, Cleo Ren & Philip Stevens. 2012. “The Need for Speed: Impacts of Internet Connectivity on Firm Productivity”, Journal of Productivity Analysis 37(2), 187-201.
  • Fabling, Richard, Arthur Grimes & Philip Stevens. 2012. “The Relatives are Fine: Use of Qualitative Firm Data in Economic Analysis”, Applied Economics Letters, 19(7), 615-618.
  • Roskruge, Matthew, Arthur Grimes, Philip McCann & Jacques Poot. 2012. “Social Capital and Regional Social Infrastructure Investment: Evidence from New Zealand”, International Regional Science Review, 35(1), 3-25.
  • Fabling, Richard, Arthur Grimes & Lynda Sanderson. 2012. “Whatever Next? Export Market Choices of New Zealand Firms”, Papers in Regional Science, 91(1), 137-160.
  • Grimes, Arthur & Chris Young. 2011. “Spatial Effects of ‘Mill’ Closures: Does Distance Matter?”, Australasian Journal of Regional Studies, 17(3), 264-299.
  • Grimes, Arthur & Yun Liang. 2010. “Bridge to Somewhere: Valuing Auckland’s Northern Motorway Extensions”, Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, 44(3), 287-315.
  • Coleman, Andrew & Arthur Grimes. 2010. “Betterment Taxes, Capital Gains and Benefit Cost Ratios”, Economics Letters, 109(1), 54-56.
  • Coleman, Andrew & Arthur Grimes. 2010. “Fiscal, Distributional and Efficiency Impacts of Land and Property Taxes”, New Zealand Economic Papers, 44(2), 179-199.
  • Howell, Bronwyn & Arthur Grimes. 2010. “Productivity Questions for Public Sector Fast Fibre Network Financiers”, Communications and Strategies, 78(2), 127-145.
  • Grimes, Arthur & Andrew Aitken. 2010. “Housing Supply, Land Costs and Price Adjustment”, Real Estate Economics, 38(2), 325-353.  
  • Fabling, Richard & Arthur Grimes. 2010. “Cutting the Hedge: Exporters' Dynamic Currency Hedging Behaviour”, Pacific Basin Finance Journal, 18(3), 241-253.
  • Fabling, Richard & Arthur Grimes. 2010. “HR Practices and New Zealand Firm Performance: What Matters and Who Does It?”, International Journal of Human Resource Management, 21(4), 488-508.
  • Grimes, Arthur, David Maré & Melanie Morten. 2010. “Defining Areas and Linking Geographical Data: an Example from New Zealand”, Population, Space and Place, 16, 165-170.
  • Maré, David, Arthur Grimes & Melanie Morten. 2009. “Adjustment in Local Labour and Housing Markets”, Australasian Journal of Regional Studies, 15(2), 229-248.  
  • Hess, Kurt, Arthur Grimes & Mark Holmes. 2009. “Credit Losses in Australasian Banking”, Economic Record, 85, 331-343.  
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2009. “Capital Intensity and Welfare: Traded and Non-Traded Sector Determinants”, New Zealand Economic Papers, 43(1), 21-39.
  • Grimes, Arthur & Yun Liang. 2009. “Spatial Determinants of Land Prices: Does Auckland's Metropolitan Urban Limit Have an Effect?", Applied Spatial Analysis and Policy, 2, 23-45
  • Hess, Kurt, Arthur Grimes & Mark Holmes. 2008. “An Exploration of Measures to Assess a Bank’s Credit Loss Experience”, Journal of International Finance and Economics, 8(1), 1-13
  • Holmes, Mark & Arthur Grimes. 2008. “Is there Long-Run Convergence Among Regional House Prices in the UK?”, Urban Studies, 45(8), Aug, 1531-1544
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2007. “Trans-Tasman Shocks: A Mediating Role for the NZDAUD”, New Zealand Economic Papers, 41(2), 237-250
  • Fabling, Richard & Arthur Grimes. 2007. "Practice Makes Profit: Business Practices and Firm Success", Small Business Economics, 29(4), 383-399
  • Crawford, Ron, Richard Fabling, Arthur Grimes & Nick Bonner. 2007. “National R&D and Patenting: Is New Zealand an Outlier?”, New Zealand Economic Papers, 41(1), 69-90
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2006. "A Smooth Ride: Terms of Trade, Volatility and GDP Growth", Journal of Asian Economics 17(4), 583-600
  • Grimes A., Suzi Kerr, Andrew Aitken & Robert Sourell. 2006. "The Housing Fulcrum: Balancing Economic and Social Factors in Housing Research and Policy", Kotuitui: New Zealand Journal of Social Sciences Online 1, 65-79
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2006. “Intra and Inter-Regional Industry Shocks: A New Metric with Application to Australasian Currency Union", New Zealand Economic Papers, 40(1), 23-44
  • McLuskey, William, Grimes Arthur, Andrew Aitken, Suzi Kerr & Jason Timmins. 2006. "Rating Systems in New Zealand: An Empirical Investigation into Local Choice", Journal of Real Estate Literature 14(3), 381-397
  • Fabling, Richard & Arthur Grimes. 2005. "Insolvency and Economic Development: Regional Variation and Adjustment", Journal of Economics and Business, 57(4), 339-359
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2005. “Regional and Industry Cycles in Australasia: Implications for a Common Currency", Journal of Asian Economics 16(3), 380-397
  • Bjorksten, Nils, Ozer Karagedikli, Christopher Plantier & Arthur Grimes. 2004. "What Does the Taylor Rule Say About New Zealand - Australia Currency Union?", Economic Record, 80(Supplement 1), S34-S42
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2003. “Economic Growth and the Size and Structure of Government: Implications for New Zealand", New Zealand Economic Papers, 37(1), June, 151-174
  • Singleton, John, Arthur Grimes, Gary Hawke & Frank Holmes. 2003. "Progress Report on the New History of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand", Australian Economic History Review, 43(1), March, 83-88
  • Grimes A. & J. Rolfe. 2002. “Optimal Defence Structure for a Small Country”, Defence and Peace Economics, 13(4), 271-286
  • Rolfe J. & Grimes A. 2002. “Australia-New Zealand Defence Cooperation: Some Considerations”, Agenda, 9(1), 47-64
  • Grimes A. 2001. “Review of New Zealand Monetary Policy”, Agenda, 8(4), 65-82
  • Grimes A. 2001. “Trans-Tasman Transaction Costs, Terms of Trade and Currency Union”, Australian Economic Papers, 20(S1), 52-63.
  • Grimes A. 2001. “APEC Competition Principles: Application to Financial Services”, Japan and the World Economy, 13(2), 95-111
  • Grimes A., B. O’Donovan & D. Rae. 2000. “Determinants of Advertising Expenditures: Aggregate & Cross-Media Evidence”, International Journal of Advertising, 19(3), 317-334
  • Grimes A. 2000. “Case for a World Currency: Is an ANZAC Dollar a Logical Step?”, Victoria Economic Commentaries, 17(2), 17-26
  • Grimes A. 1999. "Pensions and the Demographic Crisis: Can Building Up Pension Funds Help?", Australian Social Policy, 1999(2), 93-96
  • Grimes A. 1998. "The Asian Financial Crisis: How Long Will the Downturn Last?", New Zealand Economic Papers, 32(2), 213-222
  • Evans L., Grimes A. & B. Wilkinson. 1998. "Economic Reform in New Zealand: Response", Victoria Economic Commentaries, 15(1), March, 7-13
  • Evans, L., A. Grimes, B. Wilkinson & D. Teece. 1996. "Economic Reform in New Zealand 1984-95: The Pursuit of Efficiency", Journal of Economic Literature, 34, Dec., 1856-1902
  • Grimes A. 1996. "Public Standards & Private Monitoring: New Zealand's New Banking Supervision Regime", Agenda, 3(3), 277-286
  • Grimes A., A. Wong & C. Meads. 1994. "A Note on the Correct Specification of Financial Portfolio AIDS Models", European Economic Review, 38, 1171-1174
  • Grimes A. 1993. "International Reserves Under Floating Exchange Rates: Two Paradoxes Explained", Economic Record, 69(207), Dec., 411-415
  • Grimes A. 1993. "The Inter-Bank Market: Implications for Central Bank Policy", New Zealand Economic Papers, 27(1), 19-34
  • Grimes A. 1991. "The Effects of Inflation on Growth: Some International Evidence", Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv, 127(4), 631-644
  • Grimes A. 1991. "A New Production Function? Bowled by a Googly", Applied Economics, 23(7), 1245-1246
  • Grimes A. 1990. "Bargaining, Trust & the Role of Money", Scandinavian Journal of Economics, 92(4), 605-612
  • Grimes A. 1990. "The Efficiency of Nominal and Real Tax Systems", New Zealand Economic Papers, 24, 87-97
  • Grimes A. 1984. "The Impact of Taxes on Wages: A Comment", Economic Notes, 3, 163-166
  • Grimes A. 1983. "The Reserve Bank Real Wage - Employment Relationship: A Reply & Further Results", New Zealand Economic Papers, 17, 69-78
  • Grimes A. 1979. "Demand-Shift Inflation Theory: A Preliminary Examination in the New Zealand Context", New Zealand Economic Papers, 13, 56-74

Book Chapters

  • Cochrane, W., A. Grimes, P. McCann & J.Poot. 2017. “Spatial Impacts of Endogenously Determined Infrastructure Investment”, Chapter 12 in: Shibusawa, H., Sakurai, K., Mizunoya, T., Uchida, S. (eds.), Socioeconomic Environmental Policies and Evaluations in Regional Science: Essays in Honor of Yoshiro Higano, Singapore: Springer. Forthcoming.
  • Grimes, A. 2014. “Infrastructure and Regional Economic Growth”, Chapter 28 in Handbook of Regional Science (eds. M. Fischer & P. Nijkamp). Heidelberg: Springer.
  • Grimes, A., L. Oxley & N. Tarrant. 2014. “Does Money Buy Me Love? Testing Alternative Measures of National Wellbeing”, in Economics of Wellbeing, Volume 5 of Wellbeing: A Complete Reference Guide (eds. D. McDaid & C. Cooper), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford UK. ISBN 9781118608388.
  • Grimes, A. 2011. “Making Multiple Places into a Place – Infrastructure, Governance and Planning in Auckland”, in S. Chisholm (ed.) Investing in Better Places: International Perspectives, St Andrews: The Smith Institute, 69-78.
  • Singleton, J., A Grimes, G. Hawke & F. Holmes. 2005. "Twenty Years of Modernisation: The Reserve Bank of New Zealand", in N. Courtis & P. Nicholl (eds.) Central Bank Modernisation, London: Central Bank Publications, 167-182
  • "New Zealand: A Typical Australasian Economy?", in Andrew Ladley & John Martin (eds.). 2005. The Visible Hand: The Changing Role of the State in New Zealand, Wellington: Institute of Policy Studies;17-42; available also as Motu Working Paper 04-11
  • "Living Arrangements for the Tasman Currencies: De Facto Partners, Legal Marriage or Just Good Friends", in Arthur Grimes, Lydia Wevers & Ginny Sullivan (eds). 2002. States of Mind: Australia and New Zealand 1901-2001, Institute of Policy Studies, Wellington, 271-291
  • “Managing Small Open Economies: Exchange Rate Systems & Real Sector Shocks”, in Kyung Tae Lee (ed.). 2002. Globalization and the Asia Pacific Economy, Routledge, London, 226-244
  • "Risky Banks and Risks of Bank Supervision", in Alex Sundakov and John Yeabsley (eds). 1999. Risk and the Institutions of Government, NZIER and IPS, Wellington, 56-74
  • "Monetary Policy & the Reserve Bank", in D. Milne & J. Savage (eds). 1999. Reporting Economics: A New Zealand Guide to Covering the Economy, 111-122, New Zealand Journalists Training Organisation, Wellington
  • "Monetary Policy", in B. Silverstone, A. Bollard & R. Lattimore (eds). 1996. A Study of Economic Reform: The Case of New Zealand, 247-278, Contributions to Economic Analysis No. 236, North Holland, Elsevier, Amsterdam
  • With J. Wong. 1994. "The Role of the Exchange Rate in New Zealand Monetary Policy", in R. Glick & M. Hutchison (eds), Exchange Rate Policy and Interdependence: Perspectives from the Pacific Basin, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 176-197
  • 1992. "The Theoretical Basis for Monetary Policy", in Monetary Policy & the New Zealand Financial System (3rd ed), RBNZ, Wellington, 7-14
  • With A. Y-T. Wong. 1992. "The New Zealand Monetary Aggregates", in Monetary Policy & the New Zealand Financial System (3rd ed), RBNZ, Wellington, 79-90
  • "Trends in Export Competitiveness", in R.S. Deane et al (eds). 1991. External Economic Structure and Policy: An Analysis of New Zealand's Balance of Payments, RBNZ, Wellington, 257-267

Working papers (since 2014; not otherwise published)

  • Apatov E., Grimes A. July 2016. “Higher Education Institutions and Regional Growth: The Case of New Zealand”, Motu Working Paper 16-11, Wellington: Motu.
  • Fabling, Richard, Arthur Grimes & Levente Timar. 2016. “Labour Market Dynamics Following a Regional Disaster”, Motu Working Paper 16-07.
  • Greenaway-McGrevy, Ryan, Arthur Grimes & Mark Holmes. 2016. “Two Countries, Sixteen Cities, Five Thousand Kilometres: How Many Housing Markets?”, Motu Working Paper 16-04.
  • Timar, Levente, Arthur Grimes & Richard Fabling. 2015. “Before a Fall: Impacts of Earthquake Regulation and Building Codes on the Commercial Building Market”, Motu Working Paper 15-19.
  • Grimes, Arthur, Robert MacCulloch & Fraser McKay. 2015. “Indigenous Belief in a Just World: New Zealand Māori and other Ethnicities Compared”, Motu Working Paper 15-14.
  • Grimes, Arthur, & Marc Reinhardt. 2015. “Relative Income and Subjective Wellbeing: Intra-national and Inter-national Comparisons by Settlement and Country Type”, Motu Working Paper 15-10.
  • Grimes, Arthur, & Sean Hyland. 2015. “The Material Wellbeing of New Zealand Households”, Motu Note #21, Wellington: Motu.
  • Grimes, Arthur, & Sean Hyland. 2015. “A New Cross-Country Measure of Material Wellbeing and Inequality: Methodology, Construction and Results”, Motu Working Paper 15-09.
  • Grimes, Arthur, & Ian Mitchell. 2015. "Impacts of Planning Rules, Regulations, Uncertainty and Delay on Residential Property Development", Motu Working Paper 15-02.
  • Timar, Levente, Arthur Grimes and Richard Fabling. 2014. “That Sinking Feeling: The Changing Price of Disaster Risk Following an Earthquake”, Motu Working Paper 14-13.
  • Fabling, Richard, Arthur Grimes & Levente Timar. 2014. “Natural selection: Firm Performance Following the Canterbury Earthquakes”. Motu Working Paper 14-08.
  • Grimes, Arthur. 2014. “Four Lectures on Central Banking”. Motu Working Paper 14-02.

For a full curriculum vita, please see the Motu website.