Cure for housing fix ‘worse than disease’: UBS

Original article by Duncan Hughes
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 10 : 23-Aug-19

Investment bank UBS has warned that the Reserve Bank of Australia’s move towards extremely low interest rates risks reflating the residential property ‘bubble’. The ultra-low rates are also putting pressure on the dividend policies and margin levels of the nation’s large banks, while plans by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority to reduce related-party exposure limits with regard to Tier 1 capital will put pressure on the banks’ capital.

CORPORATES
UBS HOLDINGS PTY LTD, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA RADIATION LABORATORIES, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ

Bank charges on deposits a possibility

Original article by Matthew Cranston
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 10 : 23-Aug-19

Data from the Reserve Bank shows that nearly 10 per cent of the deposits held by Australia’s major banks received no interest prior to the official interest rate cut in July, while a similar proportion of deposits earned interest of less than 50 basis points. Swiss Re’s chief economist Jerome Haegeli says Australian banks could potentially begin charging customers to hold their deposits. Several banks in Europe have already announced such a move, while the Bank of New York Mellon did so in 2011.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, SWISS REINSURANCE COMPANY, THE BANK OF NEW YORK MELLON CORPORATION, UBS AG, JYSKE BANK, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB

Fixed rate falling to new lows under 3pc

Original article by Cliona O’Dowd
The Australian – Page: 21 : 22-Aug-19

Australia’s residential property market has received a boost in the lead-up to the key selling season, with a number of banks reducing their fixed mortgage interest rates to new lows. Greater Bank has slashed its one-year fixed rate to just 2.79 per cent, while some owner-occupier loans offered by St George and the Bank of Melbourne have been reduced to 2.94 per cent. Sally Tindall of RateCity cautions that fixed home loan interest rates may fall even lower, given that the Reserve Bank may further reduce the cash rate.

CORPORATES
GREATER BANK LIMITED, ST GEORGE BANK LIMITED, BANK OF MELBOURNE LIMITED, BANK OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA LIMITED, RATECITY PTY LTD, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, CANSTAR PTY LTD

More rate cuts in RBA mix to guard economy

Original article by David Rogers
The Australian – Page: 19 : 21-Aug-19

The minutes of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s latest monthly board meeting show that the central bank will be open to further easing of monetary policy if the economic outlook worsens. The minutes also indicate that RBA board members expect that official interest rates may need to remain at a record low for some time in order to achieve the central bank’s inflation target. However, the RBA also indicated that it will assess developments in the global and domestic economies before taking any further monetary policy action. Sally Auld of JP Morgan does not expect a rate cut until February.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, JP MORGAN AUSTRALIA LIMITED, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC

Bond signal: ultra-low rates for a decade

Original article by David Rogers
The Australian – Page: 17 & 26 : 9-Aug-19

The Reserve Bank of Australia is widely tipped to reduce the cash rate below 0.5 per cent within six months, and overnight indexed swaps pricing suggests that the cash rate will average 0.84 per cent over the next decade. David Plank of the ANZ Bank warns that the central bank will most likely need to adopt a quantitative easing policy within 5-10 years; he adds that this will probably not be necessary in the next year or so, unless there is a significant downturn in the global economy.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, RBC CAPITAL MARKETS, EUROPEAN CENTRAL BANK, AUSTRALIA. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES STANDING COMMITTEE ON ECONOMICS

RBA’s Lowe faces grilling over cheap money

Original article by John Kehoe
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 8-Aug-19

Reserve Bank of Australia governor Philip Lowe will appear before a parliamentary committee on 9 August. His testimony is likely to attract increased scrutiny after the central bank’s New Zealand counterpart reduced official interest rates by 50 basis points. The House of Representatives’ economics committee is chaired by Liberal MP Tim Wilson. He says the RBA’s dual rate cuts in June and July and how it expects to eventually begin tightening monetary policy when household debt is rising are among the issues that will come under scrutiny.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, RESERVE BANK OF NEW ZEALAND, AUSTRALIA. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES STANDING COMMITTEE ON ECONOMICS, LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA

Kiwi cut raises the prospect of negative interest rates

Original article by Adam Creighton
The Australian – Page: 4 : 8-Aug-19

The Australian dollar reached a 10-year low of $US0.6680 in local trading on 7 August, after the Reserve Bank of New Zealand reduced official interest rates by 50 basis points to 1 per cent. Central bank governor Adrian Orr has not ruled out the prospect of negative interest rates or measures such as quantitative easing. The RBNZ’s move is likely to strengthen the case for further monetary policy easing in Australia before the end of 2019.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF NEW ZEALAND, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, BLOOMBERG LP, STANDARD AND POOR’S ASX 200 INDEX, JP MORGAN AUSTRALIA LIMITED, HSBC AUSTRALIA HOLDINGS PTY LTD, UNITED STATES. FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY

Cheap money squeezes CBA

Original article by James Eyers, Jonathan Shapiro
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 18 : 8-Aug-19

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia has posted a 2018-19 cash profit of $8.49bn, which is 4.7 per cent lower than previously; revenue was two per cent lower at $24.4bn. CEO Matt Comyn has warned that the bank’s net interest margin will fall by four basis points in 2019-20 due to the consecutive official interest rate cuts in June and July. He adds that there will be limited scope to pass on further rate cuts to customers, as many of its deposit rates are already close to zero. CBA’s cost-to-income ratio is currently 46.2 per cent, and Comyn says the aim is to reduce it to below 40 per cent over time.

CORPORATES
COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, JP MORGAN AUSTRALIA LIMITED, CITIGROUP PTY LTD, PM CAPITAL LIMITED, RESERVE BANK OF NEW ZEALAND

Aussie 10-year bond yield drops below 1pc

Original article by Patrick Commins, Vesna Poljak, Jonathan Shapiro
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 13 & 27 : 7-Aug-19

The fallout from the escalating trade and currency war between the US and China has seen the yield on Australian 10-year government bonds fall below the cash rate for the first time. The bond yield reached a record low of 0.968 per cent on 6 August, before rising to 1.047 per cent late in trading. Meanwhile, the futures market has priced in an 0.25 per cent reduction in the cash rate by October, after the Reserve Bank left official interest rates unchanged at one per cent at its monthly board meeting.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, QIC LIMITED, ARDEA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, UNITED STATES. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, PEOPLE’S BANK OF CHINA, EXANTE DATA

Fed cut lifts pressure on RBA board

Original article by John Kehoe
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 1-Aug-19

Economists suggest that better-than-expected inflation data for the June quarter will prompt the Reserve Bank of Australia to leave official interest rates on hold in August. The consumer price index rose 0.6 per cent during the quarter and 1.6 per cent year-on-year. However, inflation remains well below the RBA’s target range of 2-3 per cent, and further monetary policy easing is possible later in 2019 if the unemployment rate does not fall. The US Federal Reserve’s August interest rate cut may also force the RBA to act before the end of the year.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, UNITED STATES. FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD