Housing industry urges RBA to make a cut in April
The RBA’s decision to leave interest rates unchanged at 2.25 per cent should be a temporary measure says the body that represents the residential building industry. Following the announcement the Housing Industry Association’s economist Shane Garrett commented: “Today’s decision will come as something of a disappointment to mortgage borrowers and small businesses who had been hoping for a second interest rate cut.” He went on to note that the housing industry is providing strength within some difficult economic times and called for a rate cut next time around: “The RBA has strongly hinted today that rates may be lowered in the months ahead. Interest rates should be cut again in April in order to dispel any uncertainty.”
Building approvals show further growth
New data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics reveal that the number of dwellings approved rose 1.3 per cent in January 2015, in trend terms, and has risen for eight continuous months. New South Wales led the gains at 4.3 per cent, followed by Queensland (2.6 per cent), Tasmania (1.6 per cent) and Victoria (0.5 per cent). Approvals declined in the Northern Territory by 10.1 per cent, ACT (5.6 per cent), South Australia (2.3 per cent) and Western Australia (1.3 per cent) in trend terms. Apartments show the biggest gains in approvals at 19.6 per cent above December’s figures.
Happy with your bank? Satisfaction hits 19-year high
Consumer satisfaction with banks has hit the highest level in almost 2 decades according to new figures. Roy Morgan Research shows that the level of personal banking customers’ satisfaction rose in January by 0.3 per cent to 82.9 per cent although for mortgage customers it remains lower. While CBA leads overall the numbers for ‘main financial institution’ is led by Westpac and followed by NAB, CBA and ANZ. The survey of 50,000 people also revealed that satisfaction in banks other than the big four is also higher. For those with home loans, Bendigo tops the league with 91.5 per cent satisfaction; second-placed SunCorp is at 81.8 per cent. Westpac scores the highest of the big four banks among home loan customers and its overall score was increased by 2.8 per cent among those customers.
Source: Roy Morgan Research
Source: MPA magazine