Na­tional hous­ing mar­ket takes yet an­other hit

Mercury (Hobart) - - BUSINESS - STU­ART CONDIE

THE out­look for Aus­tralia’s hous­ing mar­ket has taken an­other blow af­ter the num­ber of owner-oc­cu­pier mort­gages ap­proved in Au­gust fell far more than econ­o­mists had ex­pected.

Home loan ap­provals for owner-oc­cu­piers fell 2.1 per cent in Au­gust, sur­pass­ing mar­ket ex­pec­ta­tions of a 1.4 per cent fall.

The value of to­tal hous­ing fi­nance of­fered to cus­tomers was down 2.1 per cent at $30.67 bil­lion for the month, ac­cord­ing to sea­son­ally ad­justed fig­ures re­leased yes­ter­day by the Aus­tralian Bureau of Statis­tics.

The value of new home loans ap­proved for owner- oc­cu­piers was down 2.7 per cent, while the value of in­vestor loans was down 1.1 per cent.

An­a­lysts said that with prop­erty prices tend­ing to fol­low the ex­pan­sion or con­trac­tion of credit avail­abil­ity, the fall in loan ap­provals sug­gested home val­ues were likely to keep slid­ing.

“We ex­pect in­vestor credit to re­main weak through the re­main­der of this year and into 2019 as the com­bi­na­tion of stricter lend­ing stan­dards and fall­ing house prices weigh on lend­ing be­hav­iour,” JP Mor­gan rate strate­gist Ben Jar­man said. “Hous­ing fi­nance data cor­rob­o­rates the other hous­ing-re­lated data flow, with build­ing ap­provals, auc­tion clear­ance rates and house prices all tak­ing on a softer tone.”

The value of hous­ing credit of­fered to would-be bor­row­ers was down 14 per cent in Au­gust com­pared with the same pe­riod a year ear­lier.

That was the heav­i­est year- on-year fall for any month since 2010, ANZ se­nior econ­o­mist Daniel Grad­well said.

The weak­ness was un­sur­pris­ing and al­ready fac­tored into ANZ’s house price fore­casts, Mr Grad­well said.

West­pac econ­o­mist Si­mon Mur­ray said in a re­port that the de­tail on the size of loans of­fered to in­vestors showed a “soft­en­ing” trend, par­tic­u­larly in NSW and Vic­to­ria, although Queens­land was “trend­ing up”.

“Over­all, the fi­nance data is con­sis­tent with the con­tin­ued cool­ing in mar­ket con­di­tions ev­i­dent in auc­tion mar­kets and prices,” Mr Mur­ray said.

Fig­ures re­leased this week by prop­erty re­search house CoreLogic showed cap­i­tal city home prices were down 4.1 per cent on the same time last year.

The Aus­tralian dollar moved lit­tle af­ter the hous­ing fi­nance fig­ures were re­leased at 11.30 but dipped in af­ter­noon trade and was buy­ing US71.21c late yes­ter­day. AAP

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.