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Housing market unlikely to be able to withstand rate rises

Despite stabilising, the housing market "remains very fragile and unlikely able to withstand rate increases for some time, particularly as house prices continue to decline," said ASB economist Nick Tuffley.

Thursday, January 27th 2011, 1:00PM

by Benn Bathgate

Speaking in the wake of the RBNZ decision to keep interest rates on hold at 3%, Tuffley said that while the RBNZ was a little upbeat on signs the economy would pick up, "it wants to be certain the recovery is firmly underway before resuming the tightening cycle."

He said he expected rates to remain on hold until September and that despite unexpectedly lower GDP over the third quarter and retail spending weakness in the fourth quarter, RBNZ was mildly positive on the outlook.

Strength in trading partner growth, a recent pick up in business confidence and surge in imports of capital equipment were proving stronger forward indicators, Tuffley said.

He said the RBNZ remained comfortable with the inflation outlook and that the key message is, "the RBNZ will remain on the sidelines until it has sufficient confidence the recovery is entrenched."

JP Morgan economist Helen Kevans said that while Reserve Bank governor Alan Bollard noted recent weakness in domestic activity, his commentary was not as downbeat as expected as he focused more on the "more promising" economic outlook.

Kevans said she believes the OCR will remain at 3% until at least June, "with the risks skewed toward a later move should the economic data continue to disappoint."

Deutsche Bank chief economist Darren Gibbs agreed with the ASB assessment that rates were likely to remain on hold until September.

"In our view the RBNZ seems to be very comfortably on hold, with no inclination to reverse last year's rate hikes in reaction to disappointments thus far nor any immediate inclination to raise the OCR further," Gibbs said.

 

 

 

Benn Bathgate is a business reporter for ASSET and Good Returns, email story ideas to benn@goodreturns.co.nz

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Full Rates Table | Compare Rates

Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
ANZ 5.19 4.05 4.05 4.49
ANZ Special - 3.55 3.55 3.99
ASB Bank 5.20 3.89 4.05 4.39
ASB Bank Special - 3.39 3.55 3.89
BNZ - Classic - 3.49 3.55 3.89
BNZ - Mortgage One 5.90 - - -
BNZ - Rapid Repay 5.35 - - -
BNZ - Std, FlyBuys 5.30 4.45 4.35 4.55
BNZ - TotalMoney 5.30 - - -
China Construction Bank 5.50 4.70 4.80 4.95
China Construction Bank Special - 3.19 3.19 3.19
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Credit Union Auckland 5.95 - - -
Credit Union Baywide 5.65 4.75 4.75 -
Credit Union North 6.45 - - -
Credit Union South 5.65 4.75 4.75 -
Finance Direct - - - -
First Credit Union 5.85 3.99 4.49 -
Heartland 6.70 7.00 7.25 7.85
Heartland Bank - Online - - - -
Heretaunga Building Society 5.75 ▼4.65 ▼4.80 -
HSBC Premier 5.24 3.54 3.54 3.69
HSBC Premier LVR > 80% - - - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
HSBC Special - - - -
ICBC 5.15 3.18 3.18 3.20
Kainga Ora 5.18 3.97 4.05 4.39
Kiwibank ▼5.15 4.20 4.30 4.64
Kiwibank - Capped - - - -
Kiwibank - Offset 5.15 - - -
Kiwibank Special - 3.45 3.55 3.89
Liberty 5.69 - - -
Napier Building Society - - - -
Nelson Building Society 5.70 4.25 4.15 -
Pepper Money Near Prime 5.64 - 5.44 5.44
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Pepper Money Prime 5.18 - 4.98 4.98
Pepper Money Specialist 7.59 - 7.39 7.39
Resimac 4.50 ▼4.45 3.89 3.94
RESIMAC Special - - - -
SBS Bank 5.29 4.85 5.05 5.49
SBS Bank Special - 3.39 ▲3.55 3.89
Sovereign 5.30 3.89 4.05 4.39
Sovereign Special - 3.39 3.55 3.89
The Co-operative Bank - Owner Occ 5.15 3.49 3.59 3.89
The Co-operative Bank - Standard 5.15 3.99 4.09 4.39
TSB Bank 6.09 4.19 4.35 4.69
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
TSB Special 5.29 3.39 3.55 3.89
Wairarapa Building Society ▼5.50 ▼3.95 ▼4.05 -
Westpac 5.34 4.15 4.09 4.49
Westpac - Offset 5.34 - - -
Westpac Special - 3.39 3.55 3.99
Median 5.34 3.97 4.05 4.39

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