AMP Bank and MyState Bank have joined a host of lenders, including all four major banks, in reducing their variable home loan rates after the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) lowered the official cash rate by 25 bps from 0.75 per cent to 0.5 per cent – marking the fourth cut since June 2019 when the easing cycle commenced.
This followed a sharp turnaround in sentiment ahead of the RBA’s monetary policy board meeting, with analysts initially expecting the central bank to keep rates on hold.
Developments in the domestic and global economy are likely to have altered the RBA’s tone, with weak local market indicators and the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak rattling market confidence.
AMP has reduced interest rates across all variable rate home loans by the full 25 bps, effective 30 March, after which variable rates will start from 2.77 per cent.
The lender has also revealed that it will be reducing three-year fixed rate home loans by up to 64 bps.
Effective 13 March, AMP’s fixed rates will start from 2.49 per cent (4.02 per cent comparison rate).
AMP Bank managing director Rod Finch commented: “We want to support our clients in reaching their financial goals, especially with current economic pressures.
“This rate reduction gives clients flexibility, whether that be to pay more off their mortgage, use the extra money to help with other household expenses, or to provide peace of mind as they manage through the current unique set of circumstances surrounding us.
“We remain committed to providing competitive offers for our clients and will continue to review rates as we balance the interests of all our stakeholders and manage a sustainable business.”
MyState Bank has also reduced variable home loan rates for new and existing customers by 25 bps.
As of 31 March, MyState’s rates will start from 2.78 per cent.
MyState’s general manager, banking Tony MacRae said: “We have taken the decision to pass on the full amount of the Reserve Bank’s 25 basis points cash rate reduction, recognising the benefits for customers repaying mortgages and those considering taking out a home loan for the first time.
“We offer one of the most competitive rates for first home buyers, which [have helped many enter] the market and take advantage of the lowest interest rates for generations.”
HSBC has also passed on the full 25 bps cut, with its rates to start from 2.65 per cent from 23 March.
Bluestone has reduced home loan rates for all new and existing customers.
Effective Monday, 9 March, the non-bank will cut rates for all new specialist home loan customers by 60bps, and between 25-30bps on all new Prime, Near-prime and Specialist+ products.
As of 9 March, Bluestone’s variable Home loan interest rates will start from 2.79 per cent.
Bluestone has also announced a further 10bps reduction on all two and three-year fixed home loan rates.
Meanwhile, interest rate reductions for existing customers, which take effect on 1 April, will be reduced by the full 25bps on Prime, Near-Prime, Specialist, Specialist+ and Crystal Blue full doc home loans.
For all other existing customers, home loan rates will be cut by 15bps.
Chief Customer Officer James Angus commented: “We are pleased to offer our new and existing customers these lower rates.
“In making these interest rates decisions, we have considered the RBA cash rate decrease, the current state of the wholesale funding costs, and the risk profile of our customers.
“Our new rates are as much a result of the RBA’s move to lower the cash rate to an unprecedented 0.50 per cent, as they are a response to broker feedback received since relaunching our products in November last year.”
Non-bank lender Resimac has reduced rates by 25 bps, effective 26 March.
Other lenders to pass on the full 25 bps cut are People’s Choice Credit Union, P&N Bank, IMB Bank, CUA, Qudos Bank, BankFirst, and Community First Credit Union.
Hume Bank has fallen short of the full cut, reducing rates by 20 bps.
Charbel Kadib is the news editor on the mortgages titles at Momentum Media.
Before joining the team in 2017, Charbel completed internships with public relations agency Fifty Acres, and the Department of Communications and the Arts.