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Economics

NAB > Promise kept

It looks like NAB has kept its promise to have the lowest standard variable interest rate of the big four banks this year.

Today, it became the last of the four to lift rates despite the RBA leaving the official cash rate on hold last week.

ANZ will officially hike on 17th February, but from 20th February, Westpac’s SVR will be at 7.46% (+10bps), CBA 7.41% (+10bps), ANZ 7.36% (+6bps) and NAB 7.31% (+9bps).

All blame the higher cost of wholesale funds, meaning it is more expensive for them to access cash overseas, to be able to lend here in Australia to people like you and I.

As I mentioned in previous posts, the moves are no surprise.

But what will be interesting, is to see if it does have an impact on the housing market.

Today, new housing finance data showed that home loan approvrals rose to their highest in two years and comes after cuts in the official cash rate.

Economists however, say the result may have been bloated by a rush of first home buyers in NSW, eager to secure finance before stamp duty benefits are wound up.

So will this out of cycle move by the banks impact buying activity in the near future?

What does it mean for the RBA next month?

And more importantly, what does it mean for consumer sentiment?

MEMO>ricardo

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