Westpac increases rates

Deposit rate news briefs: Westpac increases special rates by 1.70%, Global Credit says its notes are unaffected by turmoil, meanwhile Basis Capital outlook poor.

Monday, August 20th 2007, 5:12AM
The main rate changes in the past week were centred on some of the bigger players in the deposit taking sector last week.

Westpac was the only bank to move, and it moved rates aggressively upwards. Its 90-day special is up 170 basis points (1.70%).

The new special, which is interest at maturity, replaces the previous 120-day special of 7.90% which is down 75 point to 7.15%.

Westpac's other changes were increases to two of its online savings rates with the Online Bonus Saver up 30 basis points to 8.20% and its standard online saver account up 25 points.

Westpac has one of the more complicated rate structures for its online accounts (as opposed to others which have one rate).

SBS introduced two specials last week, offering 8.10% on money deposited between three and nine months and 8.60% for terms of 12 to 24 months.

Another of the building societies, Southern Cross, increased its three month rate 10 points and joined in the competition for one-year money offering 8.60%.

Firm

Rate

Broadlands and Finance Direct

10.15%

Mutual Finance, Clegg & Co, Strata Finance

10.00%

Belgrave Finance

9.85%

Asset Finance, Five Star

9.75%

General Finance, MCF, Instant Finance, MFS Pacific, FE Investments, Citywide Capital

9.50%

ANZ-owned finance company UDC, a regular mover of rates, made little tweaks increasing some rates upwards by five points.

The two other key finance companies to adjust rates were MFS Pacific which put rates for its one and two year debentures up 25 points to 9.50% and NZ Finance which increased its one year rate just 15 points to 9.40%.

The following table illustrates rates on offer for $10,000 invested for 12 months with finance companies.

GCN says it's ok
The directors of Global Corporate Credit say that the credit ratings on its two NZDX-listed investments are still in place, despite the problems in credit markets.

The Global Credit Series 1 (GCNFA) and Series 2 (GCNFB) notes are at their original levels of AAA and A respectively, they said last week.

"There have been no defaults among the 130 corporate and other entities making up the Global Corporate Credit portfolio since inception of the notes in December 2003, and therefore the protection amounts (representing the equity buffer behind the notes) of the Global Credit Series 1 and Series 2 notes of 6.2% and 4.5% respectively remain intact."

It says that Standard and Poor's has made no notification in relation to the future interest payments or credit ratings of the notes.

Around $120 million of Global Credit Notes were issued in December 2003. The maturity date of the notes is 30 December 2008.

Basis Capital may lose 80% of value
The news isn't so good for Basis Capital investors. Reports last week indicated that its Yield Fund may lose more than 80% of its value.

Bloomberg reports that the Australian hedge fund has been unable to "accurately estimate" the net asset value of units in the fund because of "further deterioration of market conditions."

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