Auswide Bank has released a business update ahead of the close of the 2019 financial year, reporting an “acceleration” in mortgage growth, a decline in arrears, and an improvement in its net interest margin.
According to the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority’s latest monthly banking statistics, Auswide’s mortgage book grew 14 per cent in the 12 months ending 30 April 2019, up from $2.2 billion to $2.5 billion.
Auswide’s home lending growth was driven by a $200 million increase (13 per cent) in its owner-occupied book, while its investment portfolio rose by $122 million (16 per cent).
Reflecting on the bank’s performance, Auswide managing director Martin Barrett said: “Auswide has experienced good growth across its loan book in the second half of FY19, reflecting our strategy of diversifying our lending across geographies and customer segments.
“We have decided to increase our final fully franked dividend reflecting our confidence in outlook for Auswide.”
Mr Barret partly attributed the improvement in the lender’s performance to greater brand awareness, particularly off the back of sporting partnerships.
“Our brand awareness is improving following the Queensland Maroons partnership, which is receiving positive feedback from our customers, brokers and local communities,” he said.
“We are looking forward to the beginning of the State of Origin series on 5 June when the Queensland Maroons will wear the Auswide logo for the first time.”
Auswide recently dropped its standard variable rates by 25bps, along with several other lenders who responded to the Reserve Bank of Australia’s decision to cut the official cash rate to a new record low of 1.25 per cent.
[Related: ANZ’s mortgage book continues thinning]