Report of the Chamberlain
The Board received a report of the Chamberlain, providing an end of year report reviewing Treasury Management in 2019/20. The Chamberlain introduced the report and drew Members’ attention to key points including cash balances and the impact of Covid-19 on monetary policy.
In response to a question from a Member on the increased cash balances, the Chamberlain advised that in addition to the receipt of borrowing proceeds from City’s Cash, the receipt of the April Business Rates Levy had taken place one day earlier than usual, causing a further temporary increase as at 31 March 2020. However, this was an operational matter and not considered to be a cause for concern.
A Member queried whether the prospect of negative interest rates being introduced in the near future was a cause for concern or would necessitate any changes. The Chamberlain responded that due to significant decreases the Board was already operating in a very low interest rate environment, but in the event of further decreases to zero or negative interest rates, there could be increased pressure on the revenue budget for the Funds going forward. Members suggested that this be revisited as the Board may need to develop a strategy to manage any further developments. The Chairman asked that this be added as an outstanding action with an update to be brought to the next meeting on the Board, adding that swifter action may be required if circumstances were to change earlier than expected.
A Member suggested that the Board maintain a number of bench managers for near-cash or short-date options to balance out any changes to the portfolio, and suggested that consideration of a longlist be undertaken for this purpose.
RESOLVED – That the report be noted.