BNZ, ASB latest to cut rates

BNZ has followed its major rivals by slashing fixed and floating mortgage rates, as price continue to plummet for borrowers.

Friday, May 10th 2019, 9:10AM

Following the Reserve Bank's decision to cut the OCR to 1.5% on Tuesday, a host of lenders led the way with huge home loan cuts, impacting both floating and fixed rate products.

While ANZ, Westpac, and Kiwibank made the first moves, BNZ and ASB have followed.

BNZ's new rates, effective this morning, include a one year fixed rate of 3.89%, the same as ANZ and Westpac's one year special. BNZ's two year fixed rate is 3.95%, and its three year fixed rate is 3.99%, down from 4.24%. 

ASB has made a series of changes to fixed rates after cutting its variable rate yesterday. Its one year special falls from 4.09% to 3.95%, and its standard one year to 4.45%. ASB's two year special drops from 3.99% to 3.89%, with its standard two year rate 4.39%. Its three year special has been cut from 4.05% to 3.95%. ASB's changes do not come into effect until Monday.

Sub 4% rates, which came into prominence last year, look set to become a regular feature of the market for years to come. BNZ, Westpac, and SBS all offer three year rates under the sub 4% mark. 

Rates could drop even further this year, if the Reserve Bank is not satisfied with growth and inflation. Economists at ANZ and KiwiBank believe we are in line for further cuts this year.

The falling rates are likely to boost property prices and help first home buyers stretch for a property. Yet RBNZ Governor Adrian Orr's move has sparked fears of inflating a property bubble.

Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Orr admitted the central bank’s the rate cut could inflate property prices.

“We anticipate with lower interest rates it does free up cash, and if people choose to invest in housing that will be their choice,” Orr said.

“Some members [of the MPC], think that given these low interest rates, we might end up with more of a house price impetus. But it wasn’t a unanimous view,” he added.

“We expect to see the impulse from lower interest rates to come through spending and investment activity, and part of that will be housing activity,” he said.

 

Tags: BNZ Reserve Bank

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