ANZ, CBA raise mort­gage rates

New Straits Times - - Business -

S Y D N E Y: Two of Aus­tralia’s largest banks jacked up mort­gage rates for spec­u­la­tive buy­ers yes­ter­day as part of an in­ten­si­fy­ing cam­paign by reg­u­la­tors to hose down a heated hous­ing mar­ket.

The out-of-cy­cle hikes came at a time when the cen­tral bank held rates steady for an eighth straight month this month, cit­ing the “build-up of risks” in home prices and house­hold debt.

Spec­u­la­tion was high that the main watch­dog, the Aus­tralian Pru­den­tial Reg­u­la­tion Au­thor­ity (APRA), was about to tighten the screw on bank lend­ing, adding to rules im­posed in 2015.

Trea­surer Scott Morrison all but con­firmed that steps were afoot in a news con­fer­ence yes­ter­day, say­ing he and the reg­u­la­tors were “con­cerned” about the resur­gence in in­vest­ment bor­row­ing seen in the last few months.

“The next step was to make any an­nounce­ments they think nec­es­sary to ad­dress the is­sue,” said Morrison.

Al­ready the banks have re­sponded to the pres­sure by hik­ing rates on in­vest­ment loans, and par­tic­u­larly in­ter­est-only loans favoured by spec­u­la­tors.

ANZ yes­ter­day raised its vari­able in­ter­est rates on in­vestor loans by 25 ba­sis points (bps) to 5.85 per cent, ef­fec­tive March 31.

It lifted rates on in­ter­est-only loans by 11 ba­sis points to 5.85 per cent for in­vestors and by 20 bps to 5.25 per cent for owne­roc­cu­piers. The changes are ef­fec­tive April 22.

Vari­able in­ter­est rates for owner-oc­cu­piers who re­pay both prin­ci­pal and in­ter­est re­main un­changed at 5.25 per cent.

Com­mon­wealth Bank of Aus­tralia said it was rais­ing rates on in­ter­est-only and in­vest­ment home loans by be­tween 24 and 26 bps, ef­fec­tive May 8. Reuters

BLOOMBERG PIC

ANZ raised its vari­able in­ter­est rates on in­vestor loans by 25 ba­sis points to 5.85 per cent yes­ter­day.

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