Suncorp Bank maintained its position last month after achieving 9.7 per cent market share in November, according to the latest AFG Competition Index.
The regional lender more than doubled its share of broker-originated loans from September (3.6 per cent) to October (8.2 per cent).
Over 2014 the bank boosted its broker market share from 3.6 per cent in January to 9.7 per cent in December, an increase of 149 per cent.
Suncorp is streaks ahead of its non-major competitors, with Macquarie in second place for December (5.4 per cent), followed by ING Direct (3.7 per cent) and Heritage Bank (2.4 per cent).
The bank’s strength was based on its highly successful penetration of the refinancing sector, where it accounted for 16.4 per cent of all new home loans in December – more than any lender except for ANZ (17.6 per cent), according to AFG.
Mark Hewitt, general manager of sales and operations, said 2014 was the most vigorous year of competition since the GFC, and there’s every indication that this trend will continue in 2015.
“Some are predicting a slowdown in market growth this year and this will intensify competition even further,” Mr Hewitt said.
“In particular I am expecting the majors to hit back hard in the next quarter.”
Among the major lenders, 16.3 per cent of loans processed in December were for ANZ, 14.8 per cent for CBA, and 12.8 per cent for Westpac.
The AFG Competition Index found ANZ’s strength was underpinned by its relative success among the majors in the refinancing sector (17.6 per cent compared to the next highest, Westpac, on 10.2 per cent).
Westpac continued to be strongest in the investor category, accounting for 17 per cent of new investor loans, compared with 15.6 per cent for ANZ and 13.5 per cent for CBA.
“Non-major lenders wrote 41.4 per cent of all new refinancing loans in December, the highest proportion of home loans non-majors have achieved in any home loan category since the GFC,” Mr Hewitt said.
AFG’s quarterly Competition Index shows that non-major lenders increased their share of refinancing loans from 28.4 per cent in January 2014 to 41.4 per cent by December – an increase of 45 per cent over the year.